Friday, 19 October 2007

Microsoft faces Anitrust

Five More states in USA declares Microsoft in Antitrust judgment until November 12, 2012.

The seven states make multiple claims to justify their request to the judge. Firstly, they claim that there have been "continuing problems" with Microsoft's efforts to document its server communications protocols. The states cite a recent report by enterprise software firm IconNicholson that expresses concern that not all "necessary CPs had been disclosed." Because of the delay in receiving full documentation for the protocols, during which Microsoft "increased its share of the server market," the states believe that further extension of the judgment is warranted.

Secondly, the report laments the state of OEM web browser bundling, saying that "no major OEM currently distributes a browser other than Microsoft’s Internet Explorer (IE)." This is important due to the rise of new middleware platforms (such as Adobe's AIR and Microsoft's own Silverlight) that can create rich, OS-independent, web-based applications. Here the report gets slightly contradictory. It states that, on one hand, Web 2.0 middleware and applications may "pose a competitive threat to Microsoft's operating system monopoly." On the other hand, it warns that because these technologies "substantially depend upon the browser" and Microsoft still retains control over browser distribution by bundling IE, it is "critical" to continue the judgment until these technologies mature.

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