European Regulators Fine Microsoft Over Internet Browser Choice

Software giant Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT  ) is being hit with a fine from the European Commission for not offering users a browser choice screen that would allow them to easily choose an alternate browser. Microsoft had previously committed in 2009 to including this screen in its Windows 7 Service Pack 1. The fine totals 561 million euros ($732 million).

Microsoft was previously in compliance with the agreement but last July, regulators noticed that Microsoft had stopped complying. The company acknowledged that there was a "technical error" within the Windows 7 Service Pack 1 and promised to correct it promptly, accepting responsibility for the mistake.

In a statement today, Microsoft again acknowledged the technical error that caused the problem and again took full responsibility. The company said it provided regulators with a complete assessment and took steps to improve software development to avoid future mistakes.



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  • Report this Comment On March 06, 2013, at 12:46 PM, jimmy4040 wrote:

    Gates should take the company private, since he runs it as if it were anyway.

    Ballmer a complete disgrace as CEO, new proof like this coming out monthly if not weekly.

  • Report this Comment On March 06, 2013, at 5:40 PM, CluckChicken wrote:

    "Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT ) is being hit with a fine from the European Commission for not offering users a browser choice screen that would allow them to easily choose an alternate browser."

    I think this is not really a fine to punish MS as much as it is for the EU to make a money grab. IE is the number 3 browser used in the EU, this doesn't strike me as people having a hard time finding another browser.

  • Report this Comment On March 06, 2013, at 7:42 PM, TheRealRacc wrote:

    Actually I don't recall much of the specifics but Gates was engaged with the DOJ over anti-trust suits for many years.

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Evan Niu

Evan is a Senior Technology Specialist at The Motley Fool. He was previously a Senior Trading Specialist at a major discount broker. Evan graduated from the University of Texas at Austin, and is a CFA charterholder.

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