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  #1  
Old 02-25-2009, 06:38 PM
Jason Dunn
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Default EU to Force Microsoft to Bundle Competing Browsers on Windows and Windows Mobile

<div class='os_post_top_link'><a href='http://www.dailytech.com/EU+to+Require+Microsoft+to+Offer+Competitors+Browsers+With+WIndows/article14392.htm' target='_blank'>http://www.dailytech.com/EU+to+Requ...rticle14392.htm</a><br /><br /></div><p><em>"The EU will require Microsoft to package third party browser software with Windows. Furthermore, it will require Microsoft to provide further support efforts to make third party browsers' interface with Windows components like Windows Explorer as efficient as Internet Explorer's. The ruling is set to apply to both desktop Windows OS's and to Windows Mobile for cell phones."</em></p><p><img src="http://images.thoughtsmedia.com//ppct/auto/1235583247.usr1.gif" style="border: 1px solid #d2d2bb;" /></p><p>Ah, the EU bureaucrats. With the world economy in tatters, they're still running after Microsoft, salivating for more money. Don't they have better things to do? Or maybe fleecing a big American company is part of their plan for the economic recovery of Europe - I wouldn't put it past them. We all know that Microsoft had some heavy-handed, monopolistic tactics back in the '90s - it's a matter of public record. But in the technology world, that's an eternity ago - politics, and even the law, can't keep up with the ferocious pace of technology and they look like idiots when they try. <MORE /></p><p>Internet Explorer may still have the biggest market share, but it's nowhere near where it was years ago, and as consumers we've never had more choices for browsers: Firefox, Opera, Chrome, Safari, and even IE-engine-based browsers such as Maxthon are all valid alternatives to Internet Explorer. Myself, I use Firefox. If I was setting up a new computer and it came with several browsers as the EU is demanding, I don't see how that's any different than the rest of the crapware I hate seeing from big PC companies. I'm the buyer; let me download and install whatever browser I wish. Do we really need socialism on our computers?</p><p>What really stuns me though is the EU's audacity to apply this to Windows Mobile. There's simply no way you can consider Windows Mobile a monopoly in the mobile world - I'd have to hand that one to Symbian, and even more specifically to Nokia. Why isn't the EU going after Symbian or Nokia? Could it be because Symbian is a European company? Nah, that couldn't <em>possibly </em>be the reason they're being left alone. The browser on Windows Mobile, up until recently, was so bad it's laughable to even consider it somehow "dominant". If this ruling from the EU is applied, it will only make Windows Mobile phones more expensive, have less ROM space for our applications, and possibly make the upgrade story even worse if companies have to license other browsers to include in upgrades.</p><p>All in all, this is a ridiculous decision by the EU and it may have far-reaching negative impact on the computers and phones we use.</p>
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  #2  
Old 02-25-2009, 06:56 PM
Stinger
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Whilst I agree with you that extending any ruling to Windows Mobile is utterly preposterous, I think your comparison of Nokia's dominance of smartphones to Microsoft's dominance of desktop PCs is equally silly.

Nokia has roughly a 50% share of the smartphone market. Microsoft has an 85%+ share of the desktop OS market. There's also no evidence that Nokia has leveraged its dominance to give itself an unfair advantage over its competitors (that's pretty hard to do when your OS is going open source).

This ruling, as stupid as it is, has nothing to do with Microsoft being an American company.
 
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Old 02-25-2009, 07:33 PM
efjay
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Sounds like another stupid EU directive. With WM what browsers are supposed to be bundled that are free and not beta? Opera is not a free product, Iris Browser and mobile Firefox are still beta and not compatible with all devices, Skyfire requires data to go through their servers, so how does it make sense to force MS to bundle a browser that consumers will either have to buy or that dont work properly or that could potentially expose their private data? And all this on a device that is limited in the amount of memory dedicated to the OS and preinstalled software. ]

And why does this not apply to Nokia who has the largest market share for mobile phones? Or even the iphone which has sold a few million in Europe?
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Old 02-25-2009, 07:42 PM
efjay
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stinger View Post
This ruling, as stupid as it is, has nothing to do with Microsoft being an American company.
That may be true but that hasnt stopped the EU morons from seemingly applying the same rules to WM devices which have no way near the market share as the desktop OS.
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Old 02-25-2009, 08:46 PM
Bob Anderson
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Maybe Microsoft should quit selling Windows in the EU?

Wow wouldn't it be kind of fun for them to say, "we are going to pull out of the EU market." Think of the ruckus that would spawn! It would be liberating for a change. The politicians running for cover alone would be worth it.

As for the "bundling" issue with Windows Mobile - my God - is Europe just about the lawyers? The competition is so fierce in the mobile space that it isn't even fair to make that assertion. I want Apple to be forced to open their platform to include WM PIE!!!!! I want every phone to have every mobile browser on it. This is what lawyers/bureaucrats do when they don't want to work on the world's real financial problems.

Admittedly, sometimes my "chaotic" side takes over and says, just throw the entire world into turmoil to teach a lesson. That's what the Middle East countries did during the Oil Embargo of 1974 and they got their point across quite nicely - with no serious long-term implications.
 
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  #6  
Old 02-25-2009, 09:34 PM
Perttir
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This (default browser) is already a reality - Bying HTC Touch devices one gets Opera as a default browser. So, OEM (HTC) has done the selection Opera over IE and not MS ! So, where do we need EU ?
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  #7  
Old 02-25-2009, 09:42 PM
ignar
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What's next? Mandatory Pocket IE on Apple iPhone?
 
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  #8  
Old 02-25-2009, 09:43 PM
The Yaz
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I'm grateful that the EU always comes out with rulings that are so unreasonable. I'd hate to see them suggest someting more reasonable that MS would agree to (i.e. How about selling multiple versions of the same phone but preloaded with different internet browsers?).

Imagine having to not only choose a phone but at the time of purchase "pick" the browser you want included (yuch). Oh and by the way, if you select any product other than PIE you'll forfeit any OS upgrades for that phone since I doubt any company is going to take the time to build multiple OS copies for each phone...

By the way, aren't some of the hardware manufacturers already providing phones in the marketplace without PIE? I recall Sony Ericson and HTC have both done it so...

Either way, MS will need a few more lawyers and we'll need to pay more for each copy of Windows 7 when it finally comes out.

Just what we need in a bad economy, higher costs for our toys

Steve
 
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Old 02-25-2009, 09:46 PM
Rocco Augusto
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You would think with the global economic crisis going on at the moment the EU would have better things to do then pick on Microsoft for offering a browser with their operating system. You don't hear them going after Apple forcing them to package a different browser with OS X besides Safari.

What irks me the most about this situation is that a group of politicians, who most likely aren't very computer literate, have the nerve and the power to sit around and dictate how I could and could not use my computer if I lived in Europe. As a user, if I want to use a different browser then I just download one. I don't need a law passed to give me that option to do so.

And yes, while I understand that there are plenty of users out there that are not as skilled or as proficient with a computer as all of us are, do you really think it is a good idea to confuse those users by giving them a "ballot" screen with a slew of options to choose from?

Isn't there more important things to do in Europe then picking on Microsoft?
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Old 02-25-2009, 09:51 PM
Stinger
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Quote:
Originally Posted by efjay View Post
That may be true but that hasnt stopped the EU morons from seemingly applying the same rules to WM devices which have no way near the market share as the desktop OS.
Don't mistake incompetence for malice.
 
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