Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 10th May 2012 18:06 UTC
Windows Both Mozilla and Google have expressed concern over Windows 8. Microsoft's next big operating system release restricts access to certain APIs and technologies browsers need - only making them available to Internet Explorer. Looking at the facts, it would seem Mozilla and Google have a solid case - coincidentally, the responses on the web are proof of the slippery slope we're on regarding ownership over our own machines.
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RE[6]: Comment by shmerl
by MollyC on Sat 12th May 2012 07:18 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Comment by shmerl"
MollyC
Member since:
2006-07-04

I don't think anyone could argue that WinRT is a "monopoly" operating system. It can't run any of the x86 Win32 apps in existence, so the idea that it is a monopoly OS just because x86 Windows was deemed as such is absurd. How can it be a monopoly OS when it can't run any of the apps currently in existence?

Since it can't run any Windows x86 apps, then it is a different OS than Windows x86. Period.

Now, let's look at the Mozilla/Google complaint. They complain that they can't make a competitive browser in WinRT - mainly because of the inability to make a good JIT compiler without access to certain Win32 api, apis that MS has alowed WinRT IE to access. OK, it seems unfair advantage for IE, but ... and here's the big but ... WinRT tablets have zero marketshare in mobile devices right now, and have no monopolistic power in that market. If someone wants to run Firefox or Chrome on a mobile/tablet device, there is nothing preventing that person from buying an Android tablet rather than a WinRT tablet. That' just like the current situation, where iPads don't allow Firefox or Chrome, so if one wants to run either of those browsers on a tablet, that person is free to get an Android tablet rather than an iPad.

WinRT tablets aren't a monopoly device such that folks would be overwhelminly compelled to get a WinRT tablet over an Android tablet. Who knows, maybe the inability to run Firefox/Chrome will result in a marketing disadvantage for WinRT tablets relative to Android tablets. Let the market decide. There's no reaosn to scream about monopolies for an OS that hasn't been released, and has zero marketshare, and will likely never be in a monopoly position in its market (and as I said, its market is not Windows x86 devices, since it can't run any Windows x86 apps.)

Oh, I have to chuckle at Mozilla complaining that MS is violating its DOJ settlement, when that settlement expired last year. That settlement is no longer in effect.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[7]: Comment by shmerl
by Alfman on Sat 12th May 2012 14:29 in reply to "RE[6]: Comment by shmerl"
Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

MollyC,

I've noticed you have a couple inaccuracies in your posts. In one, you mentioned that microsoft wouldn't have been deemed a monopoly if macs had been using x86.

http://www.osnews.com/thread?517726

I know different places define "monopoly" differently, but in the US a monopoly doesn't have to be absolute in order to be subject to anti-trust, having 50% market share is the line we use. Apple's processor selection would not have made a difference.


"I don't think anyone could argue that WinRT is a 'monopoly' operating system. It can't run any of the x86 Win32 apps in existence, so the idea that it is a monopoly OS just because x86 Windows was deemed as such is absurd. How can it be a monopoly OS when it can't run any of the apps currently in existence?"


Well, the thing is if microsoft is found to be abusing it's *existing* monopoly power to break into new markets, then antitrust law can still be applied for predatory practices. In the browser case, it wasn't IE's market share which got microsoft in trouble, it was the exploitation of their windows monopoly to crush netscape in a different market, which is an antitrust no-no.

Again this is just in the US, I don't know about elsewhere.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[8]: Comment by shmerl
by MollyC on Sat 12th May 2012 20:14 in reply to "RE[7]: Comment by shmerl"
MollyC Member since:
2006-07-04

MollyC,

I've noticed you have a couple inaccuracies in your posts. In one, you mentioned that microsoft wouldn't have been deemed a monopoly if macs had been using x86.

http://www.osnews.com/thread?517726

I know different places define "monopoly" differently, but in the US a monopoly doesn't have to be absolute in order to be subject to anti-trust, having 50% market share is the line we use. Apple's processor selection would not have made a difference.


I'm not a legal expert, but I've read other analysis saying that the DOJ intentionally chose a market definition that would rule out Macs. Just as they narrowed the market to rule out server operating systems too. As I said, one of the reasons Microsoft bailed out Apple was to keep it alive as competition so that it would be harder to argue that Microsoft had a monopoly. The DOJ got around that by narrowing the market to exclude Macs (which ran on PPC rather than x86 at the time). I can't prove that had Macs been considered a competitor to Windows that the ruling would've been different, but there's been lots of speculation to that effect, Microsoft believed it to be so (since they kept Apple alive for that purpose (among others)), and the DOJ believed it so (since they intentionally narrowed the market defintion to exclude Macs).


"I don't think anyone could argue that WinRT is a 'monopoly' operating system. It can't run any of the x86 Win32 apps in existence, so the idea that it is a monopoly OS just because x86 Windows was deemed as such is absurd. How can it be a monopoly OS when it can't run any of the apps currently in existence?"


Well, the thing is if microsoft is found to be abusing it's *existing* monopoly power to break into new markets, then antitrust law can still be applied for predatory practices. In the browser case, it wasn't IE's market share which got microsoft in trouble, it was the exploitation of their windows monopoly to crush netscape in a different market, which is an antitrust no-no.

Again this is just in the US, I don't know about elsewhere.


What "existing monopoly" is Microsoft using? WinRT cannot run any Windows x86 app. It is not compatible with the Windows x86 OS. What, is it just hte name "windows" that is the issue? Lots of help that has given to WP7 (I'd argue the name "Windows" hurts WP7 if anything).

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[7]: Comment by shmerl
by dsmogor on Mon 14th May 2012 10:39 in reply to "RE[6]: Comment by shmerl"
dsmogor Member since:
2005-09-01

Apparently everybody is expecting MS to crush Apple market-share wise in the tables space within few years by repeating old and tried tactics that brought them success on the PCs in the first place. Given what they have up in sleeves with Win8 that's not unexpected.

They might not have monopoly now but as Netscape case has shown care must be taken before damage is done, as even proving them of wrongdoing with all assorted fines years later isn't effective in reversing the bad effects to the market and innovation.

Having seen WEB development being pushed back by almost a decade should have taught us something.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[8]: Comment by shmerl
by zima on Thu 17th May 2012 23:49 in reply to "RE[7]: Comment by shmerl"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

They might not have monopoly now but as Netscape case has shown care must be taken before damage is done [...]
Having seen WEB development being pushed back by almost a decade should have taught us something.

Oh don't make such a drama out of it - sure, "IE decade" brought with it some stagnation, but you know what... it was also a massive improvement. While IE6 did get long in the tooth over its reign, it was also much better than old Netscape - that's also why it won.

Reply Parent Score: 2