Google Pays Apple $20 Billion to Remain Safari’s Default Search Engine in 2022

What you should know


  • Google paid Apple $20 billion in 2022 to be the default search engine on Safari, as revealed by court documents related to the DOJ’s antitrust suit against Google.
  • The deal between Apple and Google is a central element of the Justice Department’s lawsuit, which accuses Google of monopolizing online search and related advertising markets.
  • Apple’s senior vice-president of services, Eddy Cue, confirmed the $20 billion payment from Google, which constituted 17.5% of Apple’s operating income in 2020.
  • To change the default search engine on Safari, users can navigate to Settings > Safari > Search Engine, and choose from Google, Yahoo, Bing, DuckDuckGo, or Ecosia.


Full Story

Oh, the drama in Silicon Valley just keeps getting juicier, doesn’t it? So, guess what popped up from the depths of court documents? Yep, Google’s been throwing a cool $20 billion at Apple in 2022. Why, you ask? To clinch that coveted spot as the default browser on Safari. Talk about high stakes.

Now, this isn’t just chump change we’re talking about. This deal between Apple and Alphabet (Google’s parent company, in case you’ve been living under a rock) is a big deal. Literally. It’s smack dab at the heart of the Justice Department’s antitrust suit against Google. The accusation? That Google’s been playing monopoly with online search and the ads that come with it. Classic.

And oh, the timing. Closing arguments for this legal showdown are happening today, May 2nd, and spilling into tomorrow. We’re all on the edge of our seats waiting for the final verdict, which, by the way, won’t be out until later this year. The suspense is killing me.

Now, both Apple and Google have been kinda hush-hush about the exact amount of cash changing hands. Last year, some Apple execs were under oath and spilled the beans that Google’s payments were in the “billions.” But no one dropped the exact figure. Then, out of the blue, a Google witness let slip that Google coughs up 36% of what it makes from Search ads to Apple. Oops.

Here’s the kicker: Google doesn’t just have these kinds of deals with Apple. Nope, they’ve got their fingers in many pies. But, as Bloomberg was keen to point out, the Apple deal? It’s the crown jewel since it makes Google the go-to search engine for the iPhone – AKA, America’s favorite smartphone.

Now, onto something a bit more practical. Ever wonder how to switch up your default search engine on Safari on your iPhone? It’s a piece of cake. Dive into Settings > Safari, and under the Search section, hit Search Engine. Then, voila, Google appears, but hey, you’ve got options! Yahoo, Bing, DuckDuckGo, and Ecosia are all in the running too.

But here’s a fun fact to chew on: back in the good old days of 2002, Google got to be Safari’s default search engine for free. Zero. Zilch. Nada. Fast forward, and by May 2021, Google’s shelling out more than a billion a month for the privilege. How times change, huh?

And just to sprinkle a little more spice, those court docs that were sneakily filed late Tuesday? They confirmed that hefty $20 billion payment from Google to Apple. Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior VP of services, was the one to let that cat out of the bag. Plus, it turns out these payments from Google are a big deal for Apple’s bottom line, making up 17.5% of its operating income in 2020.

So, there you have it. The saga of Google and Apple, a tale of money, monopoly, and mobile search engines. Stay tuned for the next episode. It’s bound to be a doozy.

Derrick Flynn
Derrick Flynn
With over four years of experience in tech journalism, Derrick has honed his skills and knowledge to become a vital part of the PhonesInsights team. His intuitive reviews and insightful commentary on the latest smartphones and wearable technology consistently provide our readers with valuable information.


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