Microsoft to Be Fined on Browser Violation in January 2013 Bloomberg

The EU antitrust body could issue a fine next month

The European Union antitrust watchdog could make a decision on Microsoft’s failure to provide users with a browser choice screen as soon as next month, Bloomberg News reports citing Joaquin Almunia, EU’s antitrust chief.

Although Almunia hasn’t said anything about this decision, Microsoft will most likely get fined for the second time after the $2.23 billion (€1.68 billion) penalty it received in 2009 when it failed to provide data to rival companies on the market.

If the European Union decides to fine Microsoft once again, the penalty could account for approximately 10 percent of yearly sales, antitrust regulators said a couple of months ago.

Microsoft admitted earlier this year that it has failed to provide around 28 million users on the Old Continent with a browser choice screen.

“Due to a technical error, we missed delivering the BCS software to PCs that came with the service pack 1 update to Windows 7. The BCS software has been delivered as it should have been to PCs running the original version of Windows 7, as well as the relevant versions of Windows XP and Windows Vista,” Microsoft said in a press statement

“We understand that the Commission may decide to impose other sanctions,” it continued.

The European Union has ordered Microsoft to update the Windows 7 operating system sold on the continent with a browser choice screen that would enable users to install some other browsers in addition to or instead Internet Explorer.

The list of browsers included a total of 12 different applications, such as Internet Explorer’s long-time rivals Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox.

According to recent reports, Microsoft is also investigated by the European Union for the recent policy changes it made to Hotmail and Bing. The Redmond-based technology company has stated that it’s “very” confident that no issues will be found this time.

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