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08.26.09

Antitrust Barriers to Microsoft’s Anti-Google; Google Takes Matters into Own Hands

Posted in Antitrust, Asia, GNU/Linux, Google, Microsoft, Search, Windows at 10:01 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Changing of the Prague guard

Summary: Microsoft-Yahoo! anti-competitive; Google imposes Web standards on Microsoft; Pegatron and Android revisited

THE Microsoft-Yahoo! pairing faces real antitrust obstacles, as we noted before [1, 2]. Lora Bentley shares two new perspectives on the subject, namely:

i. Another Take on Microsoft-Yahoo Agreement

McKenna Long & Aldridge partner and antitrust litigator Philip Bartz doesn’t necessarily think it’s a foregone conclusion that the partnership will fail. In fact, he says it “will be a close question.”

ii. Microsoft-Yahoo Search Deal Won’t Survive?

At the very least, Cantor says, the DOJ will make Microsoft and Yahoo modify their existing deal.

Given Microsoft’s control of the US Department of Justice [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8], it is most likely that European regulators will be left to pass much of the scrutiny.

“In order to keep the open Web behind (and to advance XAML/VML) Microsoft has suppressed SVG for a very long time.”The relationship between Microsoft and Yahoo! was established aggressively as Yahoo! did not want Microsoft at all (until Microsoft essentially overthrew the management). Microsoft wanted this relationship because it lusted after Yahoo’s market share, which it could then use to spy on a larger Internet population (data mining and business intelligence) as well as spread hostile software/codecs with Silver Lie.

In order to keep the open Web behind (and to advance XAML/VML) Microsoft has suppressed SVG for a very long time. The founder of the World Wide Web publicly denounced Microsoft for this and Google is now sort of forcing Microsoft to embrace SVG.

SVG Web: Google Brings SVG Support to Internet Explorer

Microsoft is a true master when it comes to ignoring Web standards. Thanks to Google, that could now change in terms of the SVG vector graphics format.

Well done, Google. From a selfish point of view, Google has a lot to gain here (other than PR). Rich Web-based applications have been held aback by venom such as IE (especially IE6), ActiveX, and lack of SVG support. Google’s change of this could soon facilitate a combination of the <video> tag and some JavaScript with SVG which together achieve a lot of what we find in Flash. How awesome. At the end, however, everybody wins. Everybody except Adobe and Microsoft perhaps.

In general, given Microsoft's constant attacks on Google, it is in Google’s best interests to eliminate Microsoft once and for all, for all of us. Loss of dominance/stranglehold would be enough. Going a few months back, people may recall that an Android-based sub-notebook from ASUS died right in the middle of the show. By “died” we mean “vanished”. ASUS apologised for removing what was an astounding Linux-based product that made Windows look expensive and mediocre. Many sites hypothesised that Microsoft pressures ASUS to drop the product and evidence was then supplied in abundance. There is now an investigation too.

Unsurprisingly, ASUS denies behind-the-scenes pressure from Microsoft. From the same news article:

Several smartbooks from Pegatron were on display at Computex. The estimated retail price of the devices was about US$199, compared to between US$300 and US$400 for a comparable netbook.

Does ASUS really think that there is no market for this? Li Chang, a vice president of the Taipei Computer Association, said a few months ago that “if you begin from the PC you are afraid of Microsoft.”

An industry of fear is not a healthy environment. This ought to change.

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