Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 26th Jan 2009 11:56 UTC
Internet & Networking Earlier this month, news got out that the European Commission is charging Microsoft with unlawful competition regarding its bundling of the Internet Explorer web bowser with Windows. At the time, information was scarce, but thanks to Microsoft's quarterly filing at the Securities and Exchange Commission. we now have a little more insight into what the EU might force Microsoft to do.
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RE: Better measures
by elsewhere on Tue 27th Jan 2009 05:00 UTC in reply to "Better measures"
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In my opinion EU should force Microsoft and hardware companies to:

- make public the windows OEM prices for the consumers and all computer makers and integrators, even if MS set prices varying with the units sold.

Why? What would it accomplish? Should the OEM contract pricing for intel processors, nvidia chipsets, Seagate hard drives, and every other manufacturer component possible, be made public as well?

Let's take it a step farther, and have the government regulate the price that OEMs should charge for systems, and see how well that works for the economy. Maybe they should control the software that users can use, as well.

There is certainly much to criticize about Microsoft's business practices, but targeting them for unreasonable government intervention simply opens the door for further unreasonable government intervention right across the board. No matter how much you dislike Microsoft, this isn't a road that you, as a consumer, wants to go down.

- refund any windows OEM sold with computers if the client desn't want to pay it using in a simple procedure. You as consumer should not be obliged to pay for a computer "accessory" if you not want. For me the story that a computer cannot be sold without an operating system is a bullshit. Put a FreeDOS installation or give for free a linux livecd if it was true.

You can't demand a refund from Ford because they bundled an engine with your car when you'd prefer to install your own.

There is an argument to be made about Microsoft enforcing acceptance of an EULA, but that is completely separate from what you're discussing.

If a vendor won't sell a system without Windows pre-installed, then find another vendor. They are out there. It just means you, as the consumer, need to make a little more effort in your purchasing and be prepared to sacrifice some of the benefits that the "Windows" hardware manufacturers offer.

This isn't a Microsoft issue. It's a vendor issue. Again, this isn't something the gov't should be interfering in.

Forcing you to accept an EULA is different, and if MS wants to hide behind these then they need to accept the consequences that certain jurisdictions hold with regards to refunding etc., but it shouldn't be an enforced requirement on manufacturers.

- include at least 2 IE competitors included in every computer with windows OEM sold and installed.

Who decides which 2 competitors are included? What if HP chooses Safari and Firefox, will Opera then turn around an claim unfair business practice?

And who at HP, or any other manufacturer, is going to deal with the potential for increased customer support, from bundling additional software?

Remember that the reason people pay for name-brand software is the (sometimes unreasonable) expectation that the manufacturer will stand behind the system. Is Mozilla, Apple or Opera willing to invest in additional resources to help support customers that are "paying" for a browser since it is included with the system they purchased?

Of course, hardware manufacturers already bundle software, but those vendors generally pay a fee. Forcing hardware manufacturers to install software by mandate will simply result in incurred costs that will be happily passed on to consumers.

- remove thw windows update dependency of IE. MS should make independent applications to do it.

They already have.

- MS should be forced to make free viewers for every proprietary file format created by the company and for at least 3 or 4 of the main non-MS operating systems, like MacOSX, linux. etc.

Why? I understand the point you're trying to make, but you're not even addressing the core problem, simply encouraging wider spread adoption of proprietary standards.

If the gov't is going to intervene in this area, then they should ditch proprietary standards and utilize open ones. And refuse to utilize software that doesn't comply. That will do far more to impact Microsoft's behavior than any nuisance-type remedies will.

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