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September 14, 2006

EU investigating Microsoft Office too

Posted by David Hunter at 10:16 PM ET.

The cranky schoolmarm strikes again:

The European Union’s antitrust commission plans to investigate complaints regarding Microsoft Office, said EU Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes Thursday.

Kroes, speaking at the Fordham Annual Conference on International Antitrust Law & Policy, did not elaborate on the investigation.

It’s nice to see that Ms. Kroes continues to run a professional operation.

Speaking of the European Commission, it’s still not exactly clear which security features in Vista are arousing their ire which we mentioned on Tuesday. However, Microsoft has preemptively made the Vista firewall an OEM selectable feature and trotted out an IDC report that Vista will drive $40 billion in economic activity and create 100,000 new jobs for the EU economy. Yes, you read that right:

Using a baseline for economic growth due to existing versions of Windows, the research firm determined that Windows-related employment would jump by 100,000 jobs next year.

Undoubtedly prodigious feats of legerdemain were involved, but who knows, maybe the release of Vista will really trigger a tech boom? For hardware suppliers at least.

In any case, the obvious point is apparently to pressure Kroes to tread lightly on Vista as the sparring continues. Now I guess Microsoft will need another report for the economic benefits of Microsoft Office, too.

Filed under Antitrust, General Business, Governmental Relations, Legal, Microsoft, OS - Client, Office, Office 2007, Windows Vista

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One Response to “EU investigating Microsoft Office too”

  1. Microsoft financed economic study says Vista’s a big deal -- Microsoft News Tracker Says:

    [...] Back in September, Microsoft trotted out an IDC report on how great Vista would be for the European Union economy presumably to help ward off further regulatory interference. They apparently liked it so much that they a commissioned a similar assessment from IDC for the USA which was released on Sunday. The idea that as Windows Vista gains install base, economic activity attributable to Vista will grow at Microsoft and its partners is self evident so it’s not clear why they bothered. About the only controversial claim is: Based on expected growth in overall IT employment, this share gain leads IDC to expect that more than 60% of the gain in Windows-related employment will be specifically related to Windows Vista – growth that would not occur were Windows Vista not in the market. [...]

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