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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 bhieb on 2/19/2010 1:42:24 PM , Rating: 4
I only have 100 users I support, and I can tell you that a good 20% of them if asked to launch their browser will ask "my what?", to which I'd have to say the internet. And if they were having issues with IE and I asked if they had tried Firefox I'd bet upwards of 70% would not know who or what that was.

Now don't get me wrong it is not MS's fault, nor do I believe that they should have to advertise to their competitors. There are other calculators out there too, but that does not mean they should not be able to throw one in with their OS.

To this.
This isn't the early 1990's

Your right it is not and there are Millions upon Millions of people that, UNLIKE in the 1990's, have NEVER had to download (aka choose) a browser. I'd argue in the 1990's WAY more people knew what a browser was BECAUSE they had to go out and get one somewhere else like disks in the mail, or via an FTP and such.

My parents did not have a PC in the 90's but they do now, and the browser will always be the E or Internet on their icon.

RE: Europe is Retarded
By just4U on 2/19/2010 1:51:04 PM , Rating: 3
I support alot of users as well and while I agree that 20% might not know the name, 70% seems high for those not likely to know about browser choices though..

Perhaps that's just my experience as I do tend to install the two most popular browsers on computers just for convienence sake... but for me that's just where the system builder is supposed to come in (not MS which doesn't build them) Your trying to anticipate your customers needs and give them choices is all..

... Without leaving a bunch of crap installed to boot.. which is one of the mistakes some big oems make.

RE: Europe is Retarded
By Reclaimer77 on 2/19/2010 3:08:21 PM , Rating: 3
I only have 100 users I support, and I can tell you that a good 20% of them

20% out of 100 is not "most".

"You can bet that Sony built a long-term business plan about being successful in Japan and that business plan is crumbling." -- Peter Moore, 24 hours before his Microsoft resignation
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