In 2004, the EU ordered Microsoft to pay the largest fine ever handed out by the organization, $794 million. According to Wikipedia the background was:
- Novell claimed that Microsoft was blocking competitors out of the market through anti-competitive practice.
- Sun Microsystems complained about the lack of disclosure of some of the interfaces to Windows NT.
- EU ordered the company to offer both a version of Windows without Windows Media Player and the information necessary for competing networking software to interact fully with Windows desktops and servers.
Deja Vu anyone? I am thinking of Steve Jobs blocking of Flash. It certainly is, wonderfully ironic, that Steve is dancing around the same European fire as Bill. (Meaning the European Commission and not that Volcano on Iceland).
Personally I think Steve is so right in hanging on to proprietary operating systems. The word “proprietary” is not always a bad word. “Proprietary” is necessary for the development of cutting edge technology like iPhones and iPads. You just can’t sit around and wait for someone to define the standards for You. Now, Android is great, but admit it… Steve was years ahead of that.
Even if I would enjoy the choice of what to run on all my iThings, I also accept that they are proprietary due to their brilliance.
But what if the European Commission are not that forgiving to yet another Denietary system? Oh the iRony…