In December, the European Commission and Microsoft arrived at a resolution of a number of long-standing competition law issues.
Microsoft made a legally binding commitment that PC manufacturers and users will continue to be able to install any browser on Windows, to make any browser the default browser, and to turn access to Internet Explorer on or off. In addition, Microsoft agreed to use Windows Update to provide a “web browser choice” screen to Windows users in Europe who are running Internet Explorer as their default browser. This browser choice screen will present a list of browsers, with links to learn more about them and install them. The design and operation of this choice screen was worked out in the course of extensive discussions with the Commission and is reflected in the commitment that Microsoft made. Users who get the choice screen will be free to choose any browser or stick with the browser they have, as they prefer.
Microsoft will begin offering browser choice screen to Internet Explorer users in Europe in the next few weeks. Dave Heiner, Microsoft vice president and deputy general counsel has a detailed post on the Microsoft on the Issues blog explaining what customers in Europe can expect to see and when they can expect to see it.
Director, Microsoft News Center.