Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) faces a European Union antitrust probe into allegations it is failing to offer consumers a choice of Internet browsers under terms of a previous settlement with regulators.
EU Competition Commission Joaquin Almunia said regulators had received complaints that Microsoft may have misled the EU over the use of a browser choice screen for users of its Windows operating system.
I have to say, the whole Web Browser Choice thing was dumb to begin with. Microsoft shipped an operating system that came packaged with a free web browser which anyone had the right to use or not. Forcing Microsoft to display a web browser choice screen because users are too lazy to download one of the alternatives available to them is like forcing a movie theater to also offer me a choice of health foods from nearby health stores because I'm too lazy to go to the store on my own.
Having a monopoly on an OS in no way prevents ANYONE from being able to go out and download their own browser of choice. Removing the tight coupling of IE and the OS was certainly a valid move, but forcing Microsoft to display a browser choice screen, while convenient for the end user, is still wrong IMO. I think having the browser choice screen would be a good move by Microsoft to do on their own, I just don't think FORCING them to do it is right.