Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 18th Jul 2012 21:12 UTC
Windows The moment Microsoft announced it would lock other browsers out of being installed on Windows RT, we all knew regulatory bodies the world over were wringing their hands. Today, this has been confirmed: in the wake of an investigation into Microsoft not complying with the existing antitrust rulings regarding browser choice, the EU has also announced it's investigating Windows 8 x86 and Windows 8 RT (ARM).
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RE[7]: Comment by Drumhellar
by tomcat on Thu 19th Jul 2012 21:20 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Comment by Drumhellar"
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Microsoft isn't forcing consumers to buy ARM machines, but they've already used their power to negatively influence ARM UEFI specs to the detriment of competitors.

Not at all. UEFI doesn't prevent OEMs from installing any other operating system. The OEM gets to decide what gets installed on a device (Linux, Windows, etc); and, by extension, the consumer gets to decide which device they want. The consumer is under no pressure to choose any particular device.

And there's certainly room for microsoft to pressure ARM OEMS by using their status as a x86 monopoly. I'm not asserting that they ARE doing it, but clearly they COULD. I am not privy to the backroom deals, but hypothetically MS might give additional x86 discounts to OEMs who bundle only Windows with their ARM products. This is certainly not out of the realm of possibilities and it's clearly within the realm of anti-trust.

You have a strange definition of "pressure". Offering OEMs a financial incentive to install Windows everywhere isn't banned by the consent decree. What is banned is (1) charging per-processor royalties even if the OEM doesn't install Windows, and (2) charging the OEM more than other OEMs if they don't install Windows (punitive terms). But Microsoft isn't doing either one of those things. OEMs are under no pressure to accept Microsoft's financial incentives; in fact, they're free to accept counter-proposals from any other OS vendor (Red Hat, Google, etc). That is the very essence of competition and, while Microsoft's size certainly gives them an advantage in offering lucrative financial terms, the court doesn't guarantee that competitors will be able to match all others. And nobody is asserting that Microsoft is "dumping" its software in the market at below-cost. So, quite frankly, you're wrong.

Edited 2012-07-19 21:22 UTC

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