Microsoft Files Antitrust Complaint Against Google
Microsoft, Corp., has formally filed an antitrust complaint against Google, Inc., in Europe. This new complaint will be filed within an ongoing investigation of Google by the European Commission. The complaint alleges, among other things, that Google is restricting data acquisition from its YouTube service to prevent any other search engines from effectively cataloging the site’s contents. This complaint is the latest in what has been a longstanding war between the two massive technology companies.
Microsoft has also claimed that Google is denying proper access to the YouTube service from Windows 7 phones, making it impossible to release a fully compatible YouTube app on the platform. Neither the iPhone or Android powered devices have faced such barriers, and Microsoft insists that the behavior is deliberate.Microsoft Senior Vice President and General Council, Brad Smith, issued a statement regarding the complaint, detailing the scope of the alleged abuses by Google in the recent past. For its part, Google has pledged to cooperate fully with the ongoing investigation and spokesman Al Verney stated that “We’re not surprised that Microsoft has done this, since one of their subsidiaries was one of the original complainants” and that Google was “happy to explain to anyone how our business works”.
This incident marks the first time that Microsoft has gone public with any antitrust complaint leveled against a competitor. Having been hit with a record fine of $1.35 billion dollars by the European Commission in 2008, Microsoft is certainly no stranger to the stakes involved with the claims they are now making against Google. With an estimated hold on 95 percent of the European search engine market, Google certainly has an enormous financial position to defend there, and is likely to try to find a means of settling the case as quickly and painlessly as possible.