DuckDuckGo is now a default search engine option on Android in the EU

DuckDuckGo will soon be offered as an option for the default search engine on Android devices across the EU.

European regulators are forcing Google to offer Android users the option to choose their own default search engine. The option to choose default search providers has always been available on Android devices, but it’s something users should find on their own in the settings menu.

Google’s past practices of setting itself as the default search provider on its own operating system have been deemed illegal under EU antitrust rules. As a result, Google was hit with a record $5 billion fine.

Now, Google must change its practices and invite users to choose their own default search engine when setting up a European Android device integrating the Google Search application. However, not all countries will have the same options, as the choices included in Google’s new prompt went to the highest bidders.

It turns out that DuckDuckGo had to bid more aggressively than other Google competitors because it’s offered as a choice in all EU countries.

DuckDuckGo is a default EU-wide search choice

When Android users in the EU start a new device, they are presented with three Google alternatives to choose from as the default search provided. DuckDuckGo will top the list in all countries.

Other options, which differ across the EU, include, Yandex, Qwant, GMX, PrivacyWall, Givero and Seznam. Bing will only be offered as an option in the UK, which is perhaps an indication of where Bing considers itself most profitable.

A full list of countries and their corresponding choices for the default search engine can be found here. Android Police reports that the “choice screen” will be rolling out to Android users in Europe in March 2020.

It will be interesting to see what impact this change will have on search engine market share in the EU, if there is any change. Users can, of course, continue to default to Google if that’s what they prefer.