Microsoft reigned in by EU court

23 Oct 2007

Three years after the European Commission’s (EC) antitrust ruling against Microsoft’s misuse of its dominance in the marketplace, the Redmond-based company has finally agreed to comply with all the requested changes.

“Microsoft has finally agreed to three substantial changes to bring them into compliance with the decision,” said the EC in an official statement.

Initially in 2004 Microsoft paid a fine of €497m following a finding by the EC that it had abused its dominance with the Windows operating system in the server and media player sectors.

Furthermore the company was told to produce a version of Windows without Windows Media Player automatically bundled in. The company did this with XP in June 2005 but appealed an order to share code with its competitors.

In June 2006 Microsoft was fined a further €280m for not complying with the antitrust orders. Yesterday the company accepted all terms set before it.

“We will not appeal the CFI’s decision to the European Court of Justice and will continue to work closely with the Commission and the industry to ensure a flourishing and competitive environment for information technology in Europe and around the world,” said the company in an official statement.

The terms include more cooperation in allowing open source developers access to code as well as severely reducing the cost of access to interoperability data.

By Marie Boran