Microsoft’s Cunning Plan to Get IE on Windows 7 in Europe – Part 2

So yesterday I explained how Microsoft’s plan to effectively keep IE on Windows 7 by removing it from copies sold in Europe was really is a great plan for Microsoft (i.e. not much change) and not so good for enthusiasts.

Today Mary Jo Foley reports as follows:

EC regulators said in a statement that they found a lot to like in Microsoft’s plan to strip IE out of Windows 7 and subsequently allow PC makers to add back in Microsoft’s or a variety of third-party browsers. But they were unhappy with the way Microsoft was removing choice for customers who bought Windows 7 at retail, by providing them with no browser at all. The EC regulators added that they had not been considering requiring Microsoft to remove IE from Windows 7 as one of the potential remedies in the case.

That can’t have it both ways.  First it’s claims of Microsoft’s browser ‘in your face’ in an anti-trust way, and now it’s concern of no choice.  From Mary’s summary the EU regulators sounds like a flustered parent that scolds a child about not doing a chore, only to find that the child has invented some other way to achieve the same thing, but the parent has to save face and so tells them off for not doing it the way they wanted it to be done, even if the child’s way is sufficiently acceptable or better than the standards originally expected.  Ahhh -  the petulant genius of Microsoft.

Mary further reports that Opera officials said:

“We note with intereste that Microsoft now seems capable of separating IE from Windows [Total historical dig there]. However, we do not believe that Microsoft’s move will restore competition for desktop browsers. Most users get their operating systems from the OEM channel and Microsoft will recommend that OEMs pre-install IE8. As such, users are unlikely to be given a genuine choice of browsers. [Which is exactly what I said]

“We believe that the idea of a ‘ballot screen’ is better [Do doubt – everyone likes free advertising]: when going online, users will be asked which browser(s) they prefer to use. The browser(s) of choice will the painlessly be installed and ready for use.”

Do they sound like sore winners? It sounds like Microsoft is likely doing what is required legally, but not want Opera officials want.  Could be too bad.

Microsoft’s people must be ROTFLTAO with arrogant back-patting glee 🙂 – they deserve to.