OEM hit list
Microsoft has several instances of abusive behavour towards the OEMs (original equipment manufacturers) that it works with.
- "It's Microsoft's "watch list" of OEMs and ISVs, so they can target those who stray from Windows, with their usual racketeering methods. The goal is 100% market saturation of pre-installed systems, and the /method/ is intimidation and blackmail, specifically - the threat of revoking their right to distribute Windows systems if they support anything other than Windows (via secret MoU signed under NDA). Since the DOJ judgement, the /new/ threat is a reduction of volume discounts on licenses, which then reduces the OEMs competitiveness. New method, same racketeering."
See for example:
- Microsoft Antitrust: “The Linux Threat on the Desktop” (2006) and Predatory Response (Wal-Mart example)
- Microsoft’s Brad Silverberg: “Cut Those F*ckers Off”
- "Interesting that the Far East OEMs were feeling the pain of deep price cuts while Microsoft's revenue was exceeding their budget in most areas of the Far East."
- "I don't know where they got these so called "secret" files from. From what I understand is that they definitely are playing games with their customers."
- "But the reality is that Be's failure has made a point to the world, to whit: "Don't bother trying to create a better commercial desktop OS -- it doesn't matter how hard you try, how many engineers you throw at the problem, how much money you spend, or how many years you put into it. Microsoft owns that space and, worse, the public is totally complicit with that fact. People will not stop using Windows. It is a losing battle.
- So why aren't there any dual-boot computers for sale? The answer lies in the nature of the relationship Microsoft maintains with hardware vendors. More specifically, in the "Windows License" agreed to by hardware vendors who want to include Windows on the computers they sell. This is not the license you pretend to read and click "I Accept" to when installing Windows. This license is not available online. This is a confidential license, seen only by Microsoft and computer vendors. You and I can't read the license because Microsoft classifies it as a "trade secret." The license specifies that any machine which includes a Microsoft operating system must not also offer a non-Microsoft operating system as a boot option. In other words, a computer that offers to boot into Windows upon startup cannot also offer to boot into BeOS or Linux. The hardware vendor does not get to choose which OSes to install on the machines they sell -- Microsoft does.
- Must not?" What, does Microsoft hold a gun to the vendor's head? Not quite, but that wouldn't be a hyperbolic metaphor. Instead, Microsoft threatens to revoke the vendor's license to include Windows on the machine if the bootloader license is violated. Because the world runs on Windows, no hardware vendor can afford to ship machines that don't include Windows alongside whatever alternative they might want to offer."
More links from "Homer":
Here's a reminder of some of the things Microsoft would like us to forget:
- DoJ U.S. v. Microsoft: Licensing Case 1994-1995
- "IBM evidence shows how MS controls PC OEMs - The Norris dossier provides the most detailed evidence yet"
- "IBM witness reveals MS OEM price threats and deals - Want to know what everything costs, and why? Read on..."
- "MS OEM VP to IBM: dump Lotus and we'll cut a deal - Who's a naughty boy then, Joachim?"
- "How MS OEM contracts block Windows refunds - Take it up with the OEMs, says MS. After all, they signed the MS contracts, didn't they?"
These articles bear quoting:
- "Microsoft's efforts to control the desktop via the "Windows Experience" prompted Hewlett-Packard's R&D manager to tell the company: "If we had the choice of another supplier, based on your actions in this area, I assure you would not be our supplier of choice." John Romano was writing to Microsoft business manager Dave Wright in 1997, and was seriously ballistic on the subject of Microsoft's "edicts", which he claimed had had the net effect of seriously damaging HP's PC business"
- "Gateway also faulted another provision of the new licensing agreement, which requires PC makers to pay a Windows royalty on every PC shipped, even if it didn't include Windows. To top it off, to qualify for market development funds, PC makers have to put a Microsoft OS on every PC. As a result, trying to sell non-Windows PCs, or even PCs without software, is a financial loser for computer makers."
- "If you have been having trouble finding Linux on a netbook, you can stop wondering why. I suspected it was being monopoly-crushed. Here's the smoking gun, at last, thanks to Dana Blankenhorn of ZDNet, who attended a press conference at Computex and asked the right question:
- Later, at a press conference sponsored by TAITRA, the Taiwan trade authority, I asked executive director Walter Yeh (third from left in this picture) about where the Linux went.
- He passed the question to Li Chang (to the right in the picture), vice president of the Taipei Computer Association.
- Chang mentioned a press conference yesterday where Google announced an Android phone to be made by Acer. But then he put it to me straight.
- 'In our association we operate as a consortium, like the open source consortium. They want to promote open source and Linux. But if you begin from the PC you are afraid of Microsoft. They try to go to the smart phone or PDA to start again.'
- Taiwanese OEMs would love an alternative to Windows, but the sale comes first, before production. The chicken comes first. And since the chicken belongs to Microsoft, the penguin is helpless here.
- Mystery solved. Totally blatant. Does this not give legs to Charlie Demerjian's report, MS steps on a Snapdragon? It appears Snapdragon on Asus is just the most recent horse to fall down shot in the starting gate and then get dragged off the track.
- So next time you hear Microsoft bragging that people *prefer* their software to Linux on netbooks, you'll know better. If they really believed that, they'd let the market speak, on a level playing field.
- If I say my horse is faster than yours, and you says yours is faster, and we let our horses race around the track, that establishes the point. But if you shoot my horse, that leaves questions in the air. Is your horse *really* faster? If so, why shoot my horse?
- "EU Fines Microsoft Another $1.3 Billion for Antitrust Abuse
- "UPDATE: The massive fine is just the latest in the European Commission's efforts to regulate Microsoft.
- "Wed, 27 Feb 2008 13:10:00 UTC
- The European Commission fined Microsoft a massive €899 million (US$1.3 billion) for continued failure to honor the 2004 antitrust ruling against it, Commissioner for Competition Neelie Kroes said Wednesday.
- Europe's top competition authority has already fined the company $1.1 billion -- $723 million in the original ruling plus a further $416.5 million for noncompliance.
- The latest punishment brings the total of fines to just under $1.3 billion "for a clear disregard of its legal obligations," Kroes said in a news conference
- 'The Commission's latest fine is a reasonable response to unreasonable actions by Microsoft,' Kroes said.
- Microsoft finally came into compliance with the 2004 ruling last October. Kroes said the latest fine -- the biggest yet -- is for noncompliance up to Oct. 22, 2007."
___ Quote ___ Microsoft/EU antitrust case: It's not just about bundling!
Monday, 19. January 2009, 11:19:27
antitrust, eu, microsoft Most people are focusing solely on the bundling of IE, while the EC has actually considered another important part of Opera's complaint, namely Microsoft undermining standards:
In addition, the Commission is concerned that the ubiquity of Internet Explorer creates artificial incentives for content providers and software developers to design websites or software primarily for Internet Explorer which ultimately risks undermining competition and innovation in the provision of services to consumers.
Remember, Opera forced Microsoft to default to standards mode in IE8, so it is too bad that most people seem to ignore the standards aspect.
Then again, perhaps forcing Microsoft to adhere to standards is less controversial than unbundling IE?
What people need to keep in mind is that Microsoft has abused its monopoly, and as a monopolist one has to follow certain rules that other companies don't have to follow. Microsoft did not follow those rules, and by not doing so, they broke the law.
Opera Software did not sue Microsoft. Opera Software reported to the EC that Microsoft seemed to be breaking the law, and the EC agreed.
Breaking the law has consequences whether you agree with the law or not. ___ Unquote ___
___ Quote ___ A group of technology companies including IBM, Sun, Oracle and Nokia has joined the European Commission's case against Microsoft for anti-competitive practices.
The European Committee for Interoperable Systems (ECIS) group announced yesterday that it had been accepted as a complainant in the case along with Google and the Mozilla Foundation.
ECIS said it supports the EC's preliminary findings that Microsoft is violating EU anti-trust law by tying its Internet Explorer (IE) web browser to its Windows operating system.
The EC investigation followed a complaint by Norwegian browser developer and ECIS member, Opera Software, that other browsers cannot compete with IE because of its bundling with Windows. ADVERTISEMENT
In 2004, the EC was successful in its monopoly abuse case against Microsoft for linking its media player to Windows, fining the software-maker £497m.
ECIS said that by tying IE to Windows and making internet applications and content dependent on other proprietary technologies, Microsoft is seeking to become the gatekeeper to the internet.
The group's members want to curb Microsoft's dominance as key business, e-commerce, public service and social networking applications move to the internet. ___ Unquote ___
___ Quote ___ Microsoft bribes Oz to ditch Firefox
'Get rid of it or get lost'
By Cade Metz in San Francisco Posted in Odds and Sods, 19th June 2009 00:54 GMT
Microsoft isn't just bribing people to use its search engine. It's bribing people to ditch Firefox for Internet Explorer.
"We're buried $10,000 somewhere on the internet and if you're the first one to find it, you get to keep it," Microsoft's Australian arm has told the Land of Oz. "But you'll never find it using old Firefox.
"(So get rid of it, or get lost)."
If you're the first Microsoft whore to find the dough, you get to keep it. Or at least part of it. ___ Unquote ___