Microsoft lost its appeal of a European antitrust order Monday
that obliges the technology giant to share communications code with
rivals, sell a copy of Windows without Media Player and pay a $613
million fine - the largest ever by EU regulators.
Court of First Instance ruled against Microsoft on both parts of the
case, saying the European Commission was correct in concluding that
Microsoft was guilty of monopoly abuse in trying to use its power over
desktop computers to muscle into server software.
It also said regulators had clearly demonstrated that selling media software with Windows had damaged rivals.
court observes that it is beyond dispute that in consequence of the
tying consumers are unable to acquire the Windows operating system
without simultaneously acquiring Windows Media Player," it said.
that regard, the court considers that neither the fact that Microsoft
does not charge a separate price for Windows Media Player nor the fact
that consumers are not obliged to use that Media Player is irrelevant."
Yes, you are reading it correctly. Microsoft is being penalized for giving the consumer too much value by bundling in additional features and programs for free into its OS. And just to make sure that you understand that this has nothing to do with the consumer, but is purely a complaint of large competitors that can't keep up, they make it clear that they want the bundling stopped even if it does not change the price of the OS one penny (pfennig or whatever the Euro equivalent is). They want the product stripped down and are deliberately trying to reduce its value to customers.
Gwynnie at Maggie's Farm has a funny comment, saying, "Microsoft is guilty of succeeding while American."