Opera issued a press release today announcing an antitrust complaint that they filed with the European Commission. In the complaint they argue that Microsoft should be required to unbundle Internet Explorer from Windows, and that the browser should follow the Web standards that many other browsers are already compliant with.
They are “filing this complaint on behalf of all consumers who are tired of having a monopolist make choices for them,” according to Jon von Tetzchner, Opera’s CEO. In Opera’s own words they would like to…
- Obligate Microsoft to unbundle Internet Explorer from Windows and/or carry alternative browsers pre-installed on the desktop.
- Require Microsoft to follow fundamental and open Web standards accepted by the Web-authoring communities.
As a Web developer myself it is always difficult designing websites that work on all browsers, but I do have to say that Internet Explorer 7 is much easier to design for than its predecessors. But still, Opera Watch’s Daniel Goldman makes a good point when he says:
We, as Web users, will greatly benefit when Microsoft will start supporting Web standards, something which the other major Web browsers (Firefox, Opera, and Safari) have been doing for quite some time already.
I’m not sure how this is going to play out, but everyone knows that the European Union (EU) has ruled against Microsoft in the past. Because of them Microsoft has had to offer a version of Windows that does not have Windows Media Player bundled with it, and has also had to pay a $613 million fine.
It does make you wonder how you would download another browser if Windows didn’t come with Internet Explorer, and you only had that one computer?