updated 05:10 pm EDT, Tue September 29, 2009
MS competitors criticize EU settlement
A number of software developers that make competitors to Microsoft's Internet Explorer have complained about the recent settlement with the EU that would allow Microsoft to give users the option to install another web browser. According to a Monday WSJ report (subscription required), the complaints came via a questionnaire EU officials sent out to Microsoft's competition, urging them for comment on the settlement idea.
The issue came up as Microsoft bundles its Internet Explorer browser with its Windows operating system, by far the dominating software used in PCs. In July, Microsoft agreed to give users a choice of competing browsers through a "ballot screen" in Windows.
A representative for the European Committee for Interoperable Systems, with Opera maker among its members, says the ballot is too troublesome for those who wish to change browsers. Doing so requires them to "confirm and answer threatening and confusing warnings and questions," says a lawyer representing the committee, adding that the Microsoft has found a way to make the ballot ineffective.
Mozilla, maker of the second popular Firefox browser, informed the EU that modifications and clarifications to the system are needed, but otherwise supports the ballot setup.
If and how the issues will be resolved remains to be seen, but Microsoft says it's receptive to the criticisms.