Google and Microsoft have reportedly ended a nearly six-year-long truce between the two companies, Financial Times reports. The end of the agreement could signal the return of very public drama between the two companies as pressure from regulators rises.
The 2015 agreement between the two companies put an end to ongoing legal battles and public bickering, with the companies instead handling any conflicts internally, according to Financial Times. The pact also led to increased cooperation between the two companies, which can be seen in the deep integration between Windows computers and the best Android phones as well as work on Android foldables like the Microsoft Surface Duo.
The agreement reportedly came to an end in April and was not renewed, suggesting growing tensions between the two companies. There have also been signs that cooperation has been breaking down between Microsoft and Google.
For example, Microsoft and Google have recently been in a public spat over the latter’s handling of news and media content in Australia in the wake of new regulations.
Microsoft president Brad Smith criticized Google’s monopolistic behavior over ad practices, saying that news organizations “can no longer sell directly to those who want to place ads,” ad instead to go through Google for everything.
Meanwhile, Google retorted by saying that Microsoft would “be eager to impose an unworkable levy on a rival and increase their market share.”
Financial Times points out that the end of the agreement may have to do with increased pressure from regulatory bodies on Big Tech. While Microsoft has managed to largely stay out of the spotlight in recent antitrust issues, Google has remained a large focus for policymakers. The company, along with Amazon, Apple, and Facebook, faces new legislation that could weaken its grip on the market.
Neither Facebook nor Microsoft were immediately available to comment.