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Microsoft Screws Europeans

Last response: in Windows 7
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June 25, 2009 8:58:01 PM

Specifically and more than ever with windows 7

So the European court slaps microsoft with a fine and orders internet explorer to be removed from Windows 7 before it ships - microsoft's response - Windows 7 won't be available as an upgrade in Europe - way to go - punish consumers for the beurocrats idiocy - they better get on to Apple next because the only completely featured OS *commercially* availabale is OS, I just cant use it on my current hardware......

We Europeans, and especially those of us in the UK get hard done-by, the pricing for Windows 7 was released today - Ultimate full in the US - $319 (equiv to £194), but expect around £249.99 in the UK, now the upgrade in the US will be $219 (equiv to £139) so basically anyone wanting to upgrade their version of vista will have to pay virtually double what their US counterparts are paying, take into account that we very rarely get special offers or MIR's anywhere near as good as the US and you'll get in idea why I'm complaining so much.

AND..... thats before you take into account the version of Windows 7 we get will be crippled by the abscence of IE - love it or hate it, the simple fact is the VAST MAJORITY or end users couldnt have given a toss either way if it was bundled or not, people who care a lot about the issue can install another browser on any version of windows fairly easily. Personally I'm concerned what my OS will be like given that explorer is integrated into so many of the features as to be almost indistuinguishable from the core OS - will there be stability issues? Will the performance be the same on the US windows & compared to the EU one with IE8 reinstalled - who knows - but i know my clean XP install with SP1 installed after was nowhere near as quick as a later edition with SP1 included.....

Food for thought
a b $ Windows 7
June 25, 2009 9:02:38 PM

It sounds like you have a good reason to direct a lot of anger at the EU for compelling Microsoft by force to take a course of action that was not in consumers' best interests.

(i.e., please don't blame M$ for this one)
a b $ Windows 7
June 25, 2009 9:05:47 PM

Well - I feel for you, but the people of the Euopean Union have received what the EU wants. Please understand I mean this sincerely. Not least because our own Government is heading in exactly the same direction.
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June 25, 2009 9:08:46 PM

The EU didnt force microsoft to remove the upgrade option - or for that matter IE8 from windows 7 - they just had to provide other options at installation.

Microsoft argue they cant upgrade from a PC which already has IE on it without risking angering the EU courts - I say how hard can it be to make an installer that asks for an original XP/Vista CD during install and then the corresponding Key, then just installs from scratch without IE?????
a b $ Windows 7
June 25, 2009 9:18:55 PM

Not hard at all... But explaining to the EU courts why they did that would be a different proposition.

And understand that OEM's are free to make available whatever browser options they feel their customers want on the PC's the OEM's build. Just that Microsoft is not incorporating the other browsers (or their own) into the standard OS builds.
June 25, 2009 9:31:28 PM

I feel somewhat sympathetic toward the Europeans. You are, after all, at the mercy of greedy, unelected - and therefore unaccountable - bureaucrats; much like us and U.S. offices such as the EPA.
a b $ Windows 7
June 25, 2009 9:32:14 PM

i think this isn't M$'s fault either, I'm surprised they are even selling Windows 7 in Europe after that
June 25, 2009 9:57:03 PM

Read the whole thing:
Quote:
European customers won’t be able to buy the upgrade SKUs at retail, at least not from point of general availability, but Microsoft said that it would offer upgrade pricing on the full licenses (for those who qualify).

This means we will be getting full version for price of upgrade. That is if You qualify.
June 25, 2009 10:25:47 PM

will_chellam said:
The EU didnt force microsoft to remove the upgrade option - or for that matter IE8 from windows 7 - they just had to provide other options at installation.


Right... they just had to distribute a competitors product for them. Imagine if the EU told Google that due to their search monopoly they had to include a search bar for bing on their home page. Its hard to come up with another good non-software analogy (mainly because no one really gives away goods) but their are plenty of other software analogies (say forcing apple to provide alternates to itunes on the Mac). You cannot and should not force a company to do the distribution work for competitors, and MS reacted in the most reasonable way I can think of.
June 25, 2009 11:13:12 PM

Good ..Screw the EU.
You dont like it,DONT BUY IT.Easy as that.
They should charge more to cover the cost of doing bussiness in EU.
June 26, 2009 9:44:33 AM

lumpy said:
Good ..Screw the EU.
You dont like it,DONT BUY IT.Easy as that.
They should charge more to cover the cost of doing bussiness in EU.



You really don't have a clue do you? I'm sure you'd absoloutely love it if all the UK/EU games cost $90 in the US and lets face it, we have some excellent studios present and past that could have milked it - Rockstar and the GTA franchise springs to mind - but despite them being local we still pay more.....

Further to my OP, I'm glad microsoft have updated their press release and said an upgrade licence with full install will be available to current users - it looks something similar to what i suggested in my second post, this option I think will actually suit most people better anyway - I've always had bad experiences with upgrade vs clean installs.
June 26, 2009 10:11:49 AM

will_chellam said:
Specifically and more than ever with windows 7

So the European court slaps microsoft with a fine and orders internet explorer to be removed from Windows 7 before it ships - microsoft's response - Windows 7 won't be available as an upgrade in Europe - way to go - punish consumers for the beurocrats idiocy - they better get on to Apple next because the only completely featured OS *commercially* availabale is OS, I just cant use it on my current hardware......

We Europeans, and especially those of us in the UK get hard done-by, the pricing for Windows 7 was released today - Ultimate full in the US - $319 (equiv to £194), but expect around £249.99 in the UK, now the upgrade in the US will be $219 (equiv to £139) so basically anyone wanting to upgrade their version of vista will have to pay virtually double what their US counterparts are paying, take into account that we very rarely get special offers or MIR's anywhere near as good as the US and you'll get in idea why I'm complaining so much.

AND..... thats before you take into account the version of Windows 7 we get will be crippled by the abscence of IE - love it or hate it, the simple fact is the VAST MAJORITY or end users couldnt have given a toss either way if it was bundled or not, people who care a lot about the issue can install another browser on any version of windows fairly easily. Personally I'm concerned what my OS will be like given that explorer is integrated into so many of the features as to be almost indistuinguishable from the core OS - will there be stability issues? Will the performance be the same on the US windows & compared to the EU one with IE8 reinstalled - who knows - but i know my clean XP install with SP1 installed after was nowhere near as quick as a later edition with SP1 included.....

Food for thought


I think that MS explained this issue quite well, they could not adequately test the upgrade version minus IE. And they did not want the support issues, so chose to only offer full retail versions at the same price as upgrades. Given that you EU people got such a good deal, (and we Aussies have no clue yet what our pricing will be) I think I'd whinge to the EC and not about MS per se.
a b $ Windows 7
June 26, 2009 11:02:12 AM

I can see mixed reactions. Here's my 2 pennies...

I think MS have done what they can given what the EU have asked of them. Distrubting someone elses code with your product? A whole new kettle of fish.

I will probably have to install IE anyway just to retain Steam's features, not to mention media player/center.

My beef is entirely with the EU who obviously haven't the slightest knowledge of Computers and OS's and have made no effort to find out, and haven't thought in the slightest how this will effect end users. Well done.

The most ridiculous part of all of this is that OEMs will bundle W7 machines with IE anyway, only people buying the OS alone will have no IE and they are the exact people who are clued up enough to install and use something else!

Does this affect XPmode does anyone know?
June 26, 2009 6:55:07 PM

mi1ez said:
I can see mixed reactions. Here's my 2 pennies...

I think MS have done what they can given what the EU have asked of them. Distrubting someone elses code with your product? A whole new kettle of fish.

I will probably have to install IE anyway just to retain Steam's features, not to mention media player/center.

My beef is entirely with the EU who obviously haven't the slightest knowledge of Computers and OS's and have made no effort to find out, and haven't thought in the slightest how this will effect end users. Well done.

The most ridiculous part of all of this is that OEMs will bundle W7 machines with IE anyway, only people buying the OS alone will have no IE and they are the exact people who are clued up enough to install and use something else!

Does this affect XPmode does anyone know?


I agree with mi1ez (as usual):

Like I said before, the second, updated news was that legitimate licence holders would be able to intstall a clean windows 7 using an upgrade cost licence - imo the best of all worlds apart from the fact that that its still going to be more expensive thant the direct currency conversion cost of the software from other regions - considering most of micorsofts european media is made in germany and distributed from ireland, i dont see why it should cost so much comparitively.

The other issue is will there be a performance hit - I'm keen to see how windows 7 performs on two identical systems - one with the US version, one with the EU version and IE8 installed - whether like installing a SP as an add on this will degrade the perforamnce or not...

Either way I fully intend to source a US copy of the installation media......
June 27, 2009 2:04:14 AM

The EU has chastised Microsoft to the tune of more than a billion Euros over the sin of including IE and their media player with Windows in the past. Microsoft opponents looked upont this with glee until this latest move.

Their cries for a level playing field have been met by Microsoft handing them a rake and shovel and an order to go build themselves something level on their own. Of course the OEMs can get a copy of whatever browser they wish and install it. I would expect that whomever is to supply a browser is going to have to assure the OEM that it will be full supported on Windows and that the OEMs customers will not be disappointed. How many browser suppliers will be able to plausibly commit to that? I know of one.

In the upgrade sector, the casual user is forced to obtain a browser installation DVD on their own, apparently. Where it was convenient to download Firefox by first accessing a mirror site with the built-in browser, IE, or the FTP function which seems welded to IE as well, it is now a chicken and egg sort of thing. Presumably the home builder will have to go to the store and obtain a DVD physically and which browser suppliers are really able to distribute into the retail sector with the same essential volume that occurs for Windows itself? It seems to be an expensive proposition to field so many agents so as to be able to distribute and still face the economic reality of zero revenues to be obtained from the "free" browser. Microsoft can simply put an extra box or two on the delivery vehicle whereas any company without that built in ability, say Opera, Firefox, and even Apple, cannot.
June 27, 2009 9:36:03 AM

Well we don't get this deal in Australia either, and we have no part in the EU.
June 27, 2009 3:38:44 PM

O boo hoo. They only 'screwed' you after the EU screwed them. Get a leash on your psudo-government before you start bitching at MS about it.
June 30, 2009 5:45:24 PM

The EU fined Microsoft an awful lot lately. Frankly I think they should charge everyone in the EU about $100.00 for a browser, otherwise they disable all TCPIP and networking. They should also get a letter from Microsoft explaining this was caused by all the fines that the EU forced on them. Remember that when you are downloading your pirated software. The only reason that the EU is seeking fines against Microsoft is because they consider Microsoft to be an evil USA Company. This is what happens when you support socialism.
a b $ Windows 7
June 30, 2009 7:30:15 PM

Just out of curiousity... does Apple have to ship versions of OS X without Safari in the EU? If not, then this is NOT "leveling the playing field". MS should have the option of letting the end user download IE either during or just after installation. The EU has been completely ridiculous.

Having IE installed by default doesn't stop anyone from downloading any free web browser they choose. I agree that it does make it less likely that they will do so... but then how does it hurt anyone that gives their browser away? It they are all free, then IE certainly isn't stifling any sort of competition. Google is set to take over the internet, yet the EU is concerned about MS including a free web browser with their OS (the way that Apple and Linux do, by the way...). If MS actively denied installation or function of the other browsers available, then there would be a case.

It's time for citizens of the EU to start telling their government what THEY want instead of letting the government dictate what they should want. IE and Media Player aren't big enough issues to complain about... especially when there's absolutely nothing stopping you from using many of the free alternatives available.
June 30, 2009 7:59:25 PM

Well somehow get me in charge of the EU and all this crap will stop, grrr ... if there was any unclaimed land on this planet I'd run my own country.

But seriously, if/when I get Win7 I will install IE but would use it no more or less than I do now, I prefer Firefox but always test my webpages with both.

Personally I think the EU started all this nonsense but it doesn't justify that sort of price difference between US and EU.
a b $ Windows 7
June 30, 2009 9:24:16 PM

MS and EU are like two guys chasing the same broad (money & power) who meet at adjacent urinals.

I have great sympathy for the citizens who will get pee'd on because of this contest.

And my disgust with MS pricing is only exceeded by my disgust at many, many, many government (yours *and* mine) actions.

But I couldn't help respecting MS's solution to the problem, it was perfect lol. Unfortunately, it will just tick off the EU even more, though they won't really have a clue about why.

More to come :)  Unless they both step away from the urinals.
July 1, 2009 3:05:49 AM

Might I suggest contacting your US friend of choice and getting them to pre-order for you? I did that, since I doubt M$ will have a pre-order deal here quite as good as the US one, if at all.
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