Microsoft hit with complaint of anti-competitve behavior over Windows RT

“Microsoft has been hit with a public complaint of anti-competitive behaviour over its forthcoming Windows 8 operating system, marking a possible return to the regulatory and legal wrangles that have beset it over the past decade, “Roger Waters reports for The Financial Times.

“Mozilla, the organisation behind the Firefox browser, accused the software giant of unfairly limiting Web access on some versions of Windows 8 to its own in-house browser, IE,” Waters reports. “The claim echoes complaints made to Europe over earlier moves by Microsoft to promote its own browser over rivals, which eventually led the software company to agree a settlement that gave PC users greater choice.”

Waters reports, “To compete with tablets and other mobile devices anticipated in the future, Microsoft is set for the first time to release a version of Windows that runs on low-power ARM processors, rather than the Intel-compatible chips it has always worked with in the past.

The ARM-based machines have been designed so far only to work with the IE browser, excluding independent software like Firefox, Google’s Chrome and Apple’s Safari.”

Read more in the full article here.


  1. Apple doesn’t allow other browsers in its iDevices and Mozilla has to grin and bear it. Why are they complaining to Microsoft for the same thing they tolerate in Apple’s ecosystem? Maybe they want to prevent the same scenario from repeating in Microsoft’s turf?

    1. “Apple doesn’t allow other browsers in its iDevices…”

      This is a completely false statement. They may not ship with anything but Safari, but you can add other browsers.

      Try again.

      1. By default, there is limitation, because iOS allows only internal WebKit engine to be used for browsers, or they should download even picture users sees from third-party site (like Opera Mini).

        But jailbreaking iOS device is perfectly legal, and with that there is no limitations about engine.

      2. Not only must they be WebKit, but they also can’t be the *default* browser.

        For now, I’d give Apple a pass on this since it would require an amount of work to flesh out a system where mail, browser, and other apps could be designated as the default, like they can on a Mac, but really, Apple should do this.

      1. derss explained it very well. There’s a reason Firefox doesn’t exist for iOS: they refuse to be constrained. By forcing the iOS webkit engine, every iOS browser is essentially Safari with a different skin. Although I concede Opera Mini to be a unique browser for iOS, one swallow doesn’t make a summer.

        Jailbreaking being legal and all, it’s not sanctioned and carries risks, and the vast majority will never do it.

        1. Ahh but here is the problem, they have a monopoly in operating systems and this is the same operating system. They have gotten in trouble in the past for pushing their brand of browser on their operating system and tying it into the OS so tightly that people can’t use anything else effectively.

  2. Well…
    At this point, the arguments can be made that:
    (A) Windows L8 hasn’t been officially released and remains unfinished for any device.
    (B) Microsoft is FAILing to provide enough graft to convince other browser developers to write for Windows L8.

    IOW: Premature Accusation 😉

  3. The heart of the matter if I understand correctly is that Microsoft does not allow native code applications on Windows RT. You only have the option of essentially .net applications unless you are Microsoft.

    So for Firefox or anyone else wanting to release a browser on Windows RT the only option is to rewrite your entire code base in .net vs. just porting over your existing code and putting a Metro interface on it.

    I do not think that MS specifically bars other browsers, they have just dictated the development terms of the platform in a way that makes it a real PITA to make a decent browser for Windows RT.

  4. WTH… Why can’t Microsoftie limit it’s OS, which it spends it’s own time & money to develop, to whatever software it wants? GET A FRIGGIN’ LIFE Firesux. I never understood the “monopoly” issues with IE the first time around, and they’re still just as stupid this time. It’s their platform, therefore their right to do whatever the hell they want to with it. End of story. No matter how much I hate them and their Internut Exploder…

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