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Microsoft Browser Choice Screen  (Source: Microsoft)
Full roll out will start the week of March 1 in Europe

Microsoft has a long history of accusations that it abuses its dominant position in the browser and operating system markets. These allegations have resulted in several investigations into Microsoft in both America and Europe. One of the more recent investigations happened last year in Europe and was focused on Internet Explorer.

Ultimately, antitrust charges were filed against Microsoft for its practice of bundling IE with Windows in Europe. Microsoft eventually agreed to offer a ballot box that would allow Windows users to choose what browser they want to install on their computer and the charges in Europe were dropped.

Microsoft VP and Deputy General Counsel Dave Heiner has posted to the
Microsoft on the Issues blog new information on the browser choice screen for Europe. Heiner wrote, "Over the next few weeks, Microsoft will begin offering a “Web browser choice screen” to Internet Explorer users in Europe, as required by the European Commission. Internal testing of the choice screen is underway now. We’ll begin a limited roll-out externally next week, and expect that a full scale roll-out will begin around March 1, a couple of weeks ahead of schedule. If you are an Internet Explorer user in Europe, here is what to expect."

Microsoft will begin testing the choice screen next week in the UK, Belgium, and France. Anyone in those three countries that wants to test the choice screen will be able to download the software update via Windows Update. The phased roll out of the choice screen across all of Europe will kick off the week of March 1.

Microsoft reports that the choice screen will be an automatic download through Windows Update for XP, Vista, and Windows 7. Users will either find that the software is downloaded automatically or they may be prompted to download and install the software depending on settings and the version of Windows in use on the PC. 

The choice screen will be shown on all computers running IE as the default browser. Windows 7 users with IE pinned to the taskbar will have the browser automatically unpinned. The choice screen will offer details to users on different browsers and links to download them in a random order.

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RE: Europe is Retarded
By just4U on 2/19/2010 1:06:13 PM , Rating: 2
1995 came and went many years ago. Even your average computer user today knows alot more then some give them credit for. Atleast in the western world anyway.

Regardless, this isn't something that Microsoft should be forced to address. It's up to the System builders and as long as Microsoft or other companies are not being underhanded about it then it shouldn't be a issue.

RE: Europe is Retarded
By jonmcc33 on 2/19/2010 2:36:05 PM , Rating: 1
Even your average computer user today knows alot more then some give them credit for.

Wrong. I did tech support up until 2009 and supported a fairly large company at my last job, both users in the headquarters location and those working remotely from home (all 50 states in the US, Canada and even the UK). People were oblivious to what a web browser was. I always had to call it "the internet" or the "blue e" when telling people to open their web browser. Anyone new that the company would hire was the same exact way.

If I ever called it a "web browser" I'd get the deer in the headlights look or the prolonged silence over the phone as people tried to grasp the concept of what I was talking about. Once in a while people knew what I was talking about but most of them (95%) were "the internet" or "blue e" people.

RE: Europe is Retarded
By Reclaimer77 on 2/19/2010 3:06:14 PM , Rating: 3
Wrong. I did tech support

And that doesn't make you biased ??

The only time YOU EVER call tech support in the first place, is when you can't figure something out yourself. Your argument is like a dietitian stating the world is fat because all of his customers are.

Just because you got a few idiots calling you doesn't disprove his statement. Think about it.

RE: Europe is Retarded
By porkpie on 2/20/2010 12:31:32 PM , Rating: 2
" Your argument is like a dietitian stating the world is fat because all of his customers are."

Well I don't really agree with your viewpoint, but I have to award you the 'most compelling analogy of the week' award.

(disclaimer: few of my friends and family know what a web browser is, whether or not they've ever called tech support).

"If they're going to pirate somebody, we want it to be us rather than somebody else." -- Microsoft Business Group President Jeff Raikes
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