Thursday, August 30, 2007

California and Other States to Seek More Microsoft’s Oversight

A group of states that led by California said in a court that ending Microsoft’s business practices oversight in November would not allow enough time to consider the antitrust implications of the new Window Vista operating system.

The software maker, the Justice Department and a group of states led by California have been asked to submit reports on Thursday by US District Judge Collen Kollar-Kotelly, who oversees Microsoft Corp.’s adherence to the term of a 2002 antitrust settlement. The contents of the report are about the effectiveness of the 2002 antitrust settlement.

The goal of oversight is to make Microsoft’s middleware competitors (who build software that links the operating system with everyday programs) possible to compete fairly, even if Microsoft’s operating system monopoly persisted.

According to states’ report, Microsoft has not directly contravened these provisions. On the other hand, the California group said that the consent decree has not led to any more competition. The fact show that many PC makers have sold computers with Microsoft Web browsers set as the default, this means that Microsoft’s is continuing to dominate the operating system market.

Nowadays, consumers have more choices than before. Yet, the Microsoft has moved forward substantially. Microsoft’s movement of its latest operating system, Window Vista, has been changing the game. Microsoft always tries to keep its marketplace on the top position. On the other hand, Microsoft’s Internet Explorer is not totally dominating the marketplace anymore, Mozilla’s FireFox and Apple Inc.’s Safari has presented a new competition and they are likely more increasing in their popularity among the Internet users.

According to the spokesperson of justice department, Microsoft’s operating system market share has not dropped because of the consent decree. Moreover, Microsoft was never found to have acquired or increased its monopoly market share unlawfully. However, Microsoft directly countered it and said that Final Judgments were never designed to reduce Microsoft’s share in any putative market. The federal court is expected to release a status report on Microsoft’s compliance with the consent decree Friday.

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