Feeds

Microsoft's browser ballot bodge gets the nod

Commission agrees to test ballot screen

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Microsoft is a step nearer to settling a large part of its ongoing disagreements with the European Commission - the regulators have agreed to market-test Microsoft's suggested solution to browser bundling.

The software giant offered to include a ballot screen which would show users a choice of possible browsers when a machine is first booted up. The Commission informally tested this over the summer and asked Microsoft for some improvements.

'Steelie' Neelie Kroes said: "The Commission's preliminary view is that Microsoft's commitments would indeed address our competition concerns.

"Microsoft's proposal in particular recognises the principle that consumers should be given a free and effective choice of web browser. It would empower all current and future users of Windows in Europe to choose which browser they wished to use. It would therefore have a direct and immediate impact on the market."

Microsoft's general counsel Brad Smith also welcomed the move.

The screen will include the 12 most popular browsers in the European Union. The Commission said that as there are five main browsers currently in use, this would leave room for potential new entrants.

Hardware makers will also be able to set another browser as default and disable Internet Explorer. The commitment to the choice screen will stay in place for five years.

The Commission statement is here. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
iOS 8 release: WebGL now runs everywhere. Hurrah for 3D graphics!
HTML 5's pretty neat ... when your browser supports it
Mathematica hits the Web
Wolfram embraces the cloud, promies private cloud cut of its number-cruncher
Mozilla shutters Labs, tells nobody it's been dead for five months
Staffer's blog reveals all as projects languish on GitHub
'People have forgotten just how late the first iPhone arrived ...'
Plus: 'Google's IDEALISM is an injudicious justification for inappropriate biz practices'
SUSE Linux owner Attachmate gobbled by Micro Focus for $2.3bn
Merger will lead to mainframe and COBOL powerhouse
iOS 8 Healthkit gets a bug SO Apple KILLS it. That's real healthcare!
Not fit for purpose on day of launch, says Cupertino
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.