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This Thursday, Jan. 3, 2013, photo shows a Google sign at the company's headquarters in Mountain View, Calif. Google is pledging to license hundreds of key patents to mobile computing rivals under more reasonable terms and to curb the use of snippets from other websites in Internet search results in a settlement that ends a high-profile antitrust probe.
This Thursday, Jan. 3, 2013, photo shows a Google sign at the company's headquarters in Mountain View, Calif. Google is pledging to license hundreds of key patents to mobile computing rivals under more reasonable terms and to curb the use of snippets from other websites in Internet search results in a settlement that ends a high-profile antitrust probe.
(Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP)

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Google brushed off the Feds, but not the competition

Google evaded the Feds but won’t so easily do the same with rivals. The U.S. Federal Trade Commission’s extensive antitrust probe into the dominant search engine ended with a whimper: the company promises to behave. The government’s case always looked shaky. If it couldn’t nail Microsoft, Google was a pipe dream. Just as well. For now, it’s still a problem for the market to sort out.