EU Going After Microsoft, Again

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted May 30, 2009 8:47 AM CDT
Microsoft founder Bill Gates arrives at the European Union Commission Headquarter in Brussels, Tuesday Jan. 27, 2009, for a meeting with European Union Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso.   (AP Photo/Thierry Charlier)
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(Newser) – European Union regulators are taking yet another shot at Microsoft, and this time they’re hoping to do more than fine the software giant, the Wall Street Journal reports. Their latest strategy: forcing Microsoft to bundle alternative web browsers with Windows, thereby diluting Internet Explorer’s inherent advantage. They may also demand a “ballot screen” that would ask new users which browsers they’d like installed.

Microsoft may be required to contractually ensure that the computer manufacturers it does business with leave the other browsers in place. Other browser purveyors, including Google, want Microsoft to go even further, sending out the alternative browsers to users as an automatic download. A final decision won’t be made for weeks. An EU spokesman said any action against Microsoft “would be based on the fundamental principle of unbiased choice.”