EU set to charge Microsoft over ruling breach

“Microsoft Corp will be charged for failing to comply with a 2009 ruling ordering it to offer a choice of web browsers, the European Union’s antitrust chief said on Thursday, which could mean a hefty fine for the company,” Karolina Slowikowska and Foo Yun Chee report for Reuters.

“U.S.-based Microsoft’s more than decade-long battle with the European Commission has already landed it with fines totaling more than a billion euros ($1.28 billion),” Slowikowska and Foo report. “The Commission, which opened an investigation into the issue in July, is now preparing formal charges against the company, EU Competition Commissioner Joaquin Almunia said.”

Slowikowska and Foo report, “This is the second time Microsoft has failed to comply with an EU decision. If found guilty of breaching EU rules, it could be penalized up to $7.4 billion or 10 percent of its revenues for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2012… Keen to avoid more regulatory problems, Microsoft, the world’s largest software company, has blamed the latest run-in with the EU watchdog on a technical glitch.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Technical glitch? Well, it is Microsoft.

18 Comments

    1. Apple doesn’t need to – the ruling doesn’t apply to them. Microsoft used IE illegally as a bludgeon against its competitors and customers to fortify a monopoly position. The ruling against MS to offer alternative browsers is part of their restitution.

    2. You can use any web browser designed for a Mac on a Mac, just as as you can use any browser designed for Windows on Windows. This EU ruling is bullshit blackmail. If those idiots over there can’t figure out how to install another browser then they shouldn’t have a computer. What if they told Apple they had to offer a choice of media players besides iTunes?

      1. You can’t uninstall Internet Exploder. Microsoft intentionally baked it into Windows as part of their effort to kill off competing browsers.

        Not only is it not blackmail(I don’t think you know what that word means), it’s richly deserved. Anybody suggesting that it’s somehow wrong for MS to pay for illegally leveraging its monopoly is one seriously pathetic apologist.

        1. You don’t need to uninstall Internet Explorer to use another browser anymore than you need uninstall Safari in order to use Firefox or Opera. If Windows somehow blocked the installation of a competing browser that would be different. I’m not apologizing for Microsoft; they deserve a lot of grief over some of stuff they’ve pulled over the decades. I’m just saying that if the EU can pull this kind of stunt on them they can do it to anyone.

          1. You have to understand this goes way back to 2005 (?) or earlier. MS intentionally tied IE into the operating system (so they claimed) and that it couldn’t be removed without impairing performance on the core OS. It was nonsense, of course, and the EU put a stop to that by making MS offer a choice of browsers on their OS for new users. It was a big deal back then, and just one of the many dirty tricks MS used to maintain or extend their monopoly at the time.

  1. Gee it used to be “the dog ate my homework” but now it’s a “technical glitch”. What did they use the first time they failed to comply, probably that rounding off error. I would not be surprised to see them steal a page from Apple’s play book “It’s in our DNA not to pay” the next time there is another breach. It’s a good thing the convicted monopolist is dealing with Europe, I heard that there is one country out there that locks you up and throws away the key after three strikes.

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