Android case: Google is about to knock on the door of the SC, asking for more time to comply

Days after the Supreme Court rejected Google’s appeal for a stay of the TCC’s Android decision, the tech giant is likely to approach the Supreme Court to extend the deadline for compliance with the 10 non-monetary guidelines of the ICC.

The indications are that the tech giant will soon mention the petition (interlocutory petition) seeking an extension of time before the Chief Justice of India, DY Chandrachud, sources said.

However, some competition law practitioners have also argued that Google may now even contact the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT), or the ICC, to ask for more time to comply with the ICC’s instructions.

Last week, the Supreme Court, while rejecting Google’s plea to stay the NCLAT order, extended the compliance period for an additional week, and that period expires on January 26. The Supreme Court had also ordered the NCLAT to dispose of Google’s preferred appeal on March 31, 2023.

This decision by the SC should pave the way for start-ups to compete with Google on a level playing field and opened up immense opportunities for expansion. The result will spur innovation and unleash the entrepreneurial and animal spirit of start-ups, and go a long way in redefining the digital landscape.

It may be recalled that the Competition Commission of India (ICC) on October 20 last year found that Google had abused its dominant position in the operating system of smart mobile devices and issued 10 commandments to Google to comply within 10 months.

The original deadline for Google to comply with the ICC ruling – including a penalty of ₹1,337 crore and 10 non-monetary instructions – was January 19, as the competition watchdog only granted a window ninety days for compliance.

Even the one-week extended compliance deadline (January 26) might not be enough – if Google decides to comply – as the tech giant would have to rework its existing agreements (MADA and AFA) with thousands of device makers. original equipment according to ICC guidelines, sources added.

Legal experts noted that the SC’s latest decision in Google’s appeal is the law of the land and the tech giant may have the option to file for review, which was unlikely because such a window is only available for “apparent error of records”. In addition, petitions for review are decided by circulation in the chambers and, normally, oral hearings are not granted.