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Dave Heiner  (Source:
Microsoft said FTC isn't doing enough to force Google to conform with antitrust laws

A Microsoft executive has called Google out on the fact that Windows Phone users cannot enjoy a full YouTube experience the way Android and iOS users can.

Dave Heiner, Vice President and Deputy General Counsel of Microsoft, wrote a post about the fact that the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is not doing enough to force Google to conform with antitrust laws. More specifically, Microsoft is upset that Windows Phone still cannot get a full YouTube app while the competition (Android and iOS) are able.

"Despite government scrutiny, Google continues to block Microsoft from offering its customers proper access to YouTube," said Heiner. "This is an important issue because consumers value YouTube access on their phone: YouTube apps on the Android and Apple platforms were two of the most downloaded mobile applications in 2012, according to recent news reports. Yet Google still refuses to allow Windows Phone users to have the same access to YouTube that Android and Apple customers enjoy. Microsoft has continued to engage with YouTube personnel over the past two years to remedy this problem for consumers.

"As you might expect, it appears that YouTube itself would like all customers – on Windows Phone as on any other device – to have a great YouTube experience. But just last month we learned from YouTube that senior executives at Google told them not to enable a first-class YouTube experience on Windows Phones."

Heiner mentioned that the European Commission has addressed Google's business practices and is working toward a resolution that will keep Google in line, but the FTC, however, is taking it a little too easy on the search giant.

"Meanwhile, in the United States, news reports have stated that the FTC may close its investigation if Google merely makes certain “voluntary commitments” to reform its behavior," wrote Heiner. "Separately, news reports suggest that Google will finally agree to live up to its promises to make its standard essential patents available to all on reasonable terms. Unfortunately, this agreement appears to be less demanding than the pledge the U.S. Department of Justice received from Apple and Microsoft nearly a year ago."

Heiner complained that Microsoft had raised the issue about the full-featured YouTube app almost two years ago, and while the European Commission and the FTC are both investigating the matter, Microsoft wants the matter resolved once and for all.

Microsoft is just one tech company that is consistently targeted by the European Commission regarding antitrust laws. It started in March 2004 when a European Commission high court found the company guilty of using tactics to freeze out its competitors in the media player and server software markets. It was fined $690 million.

Back in 2008, the EU fined Microsoft $1.4 billion for refusing to comply during its legal feud with the EU between July 2006 and October 2007. Microsoft was charged $3.83 million a day for each day of non-compliance.

Moving forward to 2009, the EU went after Microsoft again for tying Internet Explorer to Windows, and by doing so, Microsoft is "stealing" a unique and unfair advantage.

The EU has been on top of Microsoft throughout 2012, with most problems stemming from browser choices in Windows 7 and more browser issues with Windows RT.
In December, the Commission began investigating Microsoft's policy changes in Bing and Hotmail to make sure they comply with user privacy.

You can read Heiner's full post here.

Source: TechNet

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RE: Pot meet Kettle
By GulWestfale on 1/3/2013 10:39:14 AM , Rating: 3
internet explorer sucks, i do not want it on my android... but a version of office would be nice.

as far as youtube is concerned: windows phone victims can access it through a browser, so it's still there, they just don't get a custom app. i don't see what the problem is. if i refuse to make a popular android app available for windows, microsoft will sue me?

RE: Pot meet Kettle
By djdjohnson on 1/3/2013 11:16:08 AM , Rating: 4
Windows Phone users can no longer access YouTube from a browser. As of about two weeks ago, Google has changed the video URLs so they don't work on IE.

The problem here is that Google is ACTIVELY preventing YouTube from being accessible on Windows Phone. It's deliberate.

RE: Pot meet Kettle
By othercents on 1/3/2013 11:30:11 AM , Rating: 3
Windows Phone users can no longer access YouTube from a browser.

I'm still able to access YouTube using WP7.5, so maybe it has something to do with WP8 or more specifically with incompatibility with IE10.


RE: Pot meet Kettle
By sweatshopking on 1/3/2013 11:32:26 AM , Rating: 2
no, it was on both. it's fixed now.

RE: Pot meet Kettle
By wordsworm on 1/3/2013 1:13:14 PM , Rating: 3
hmmm... well maybe MS could fix their browser so that people *can* watch Youtube videos from Windows Explorer.

RE: Pot meet Kettle
By ClownPuncher on 1/3/13, Rating: 0
RE: Pot meet Kettle
By maugrimtr on 1/4/2013 8:50:42 AM , Rating: 1
Yes, he is. If Youtube works on Chrome, Firefox, Opera and Safari but doesn't work on Internet Explorer 10 then that simply means IE10 is not standards compliant and is broken. That's Microsoft shooting itself in the foot not Google being anti-competitive for refusing to support a broken browser.

Similarly, if Google decides not to release a Youtube app for Windows 8 using it's entirely private wholly owned API, then that's none of Microsoft's business either. They should sell more phones to make it cost effective for Google to give a damn about them.

How is this even anti-competitive? Google have the right to deny access to non-public APIs except for their own apps - that's why they are non-public to start with!

RE: Pot meet Kettle
By ClownPuncher on 1/4/2013 11:11:49 AM , Rating: 2
IE10 is not a broken browser, nor does it lack compliance in standards.

RE: Pot meet Kettle
By wordsworm on 1/7/2013 1:55:53 PM , Rating: 2
You remind me of Apple-Jobs: it's not broken. Everyone is using it wrong!

RE: Pot meet Kettle
By ClownPuncher on 1/7/2013 4:18:33 PM , Rating: 2
That would imply there are quite a few people actually having problems with IE10 in comparison to the competitors. That does not seem to be the case like it was for IE8 and 9.

RE: Pot meet Kettle
By przemo_li on 1/3/2013 1:23:34 PM , Rating: 2
MS never really carred about W3C standards. So my pick would be BUG in IE.

Now MS fixed it.

And since other did not had such problems, its more probable that it was as described above.

RE: Pot meet Kettle
By Mitch101 on 1/3/2013 2:50:53 PM , Rating: 5
Yet IE on the Mobile devices has one of the highest ratings for CSS and HTML5.


“In 2010 and again more recently, Google blocked Microsoft’s new Windows Phones from operating properly with YouTube. Google has enabled its own Android phones to access YouTube so that users can search for video categories, find favourites, see ratings, and so forth in the rich user interfaces offered by those phones. It’s done the same thing for the iPhones offered by Apple, which doesn’t offer a competing search service.

Unfortunately, Google has refused to allow Microsoft’s new Windows Phones to access this YouTube metadata in the same way that Android phones and iPhones do. As a result, Microsoft’s YouTube “app” on Windows Phones is basically just a browser displaying YouTube’s mobile Web site, without the rich functionality offered on competing phones. Microsoft is ready to release a high quality YouTube app for Windows Phone. We just need permission to access YouTube in the way that other phones already do, permission Google has refused to provide .” - Dave Heiner Vice President & Deputy General Counsel, Microsoft

Really if Windows Phone is so Insignificant then why was google worried enough to block it? Maybe it has something to do with the estimated 7 million Nokia 920's that have been sold recently?

RE: Pot meet Kettle
By othercents on 1/3/2013 4:25:33 PM , Rating: 3
Really if Windows Phone is so Insignificant then why was google worried enough to block it? Maybe it has something to do with the estimated 7 million Nokia 920's that have been sold recently?

Why would they be worried? Would that make the amount of revenue they receive from the sell of Android devices go down? Probably not since they give Android away. Wouldn't allowing people access to YouTube be more advertising revenue?

I guess the only thing that would cause issues is if the Microsoft created application would show the video without the advertising. If the source of revenue for my website was removed I would find every way to get it back again. It is very possible that Google would allow Microsoft permission if Microsoft submitted their application to Google to be "approved". Now it is just two people complaining that the other wont cooperate.


RE: Pot meet Kettle
By InsGadget on 1/4/2013 2:42:56 PM , Rating: 2
I guess the only thing that would cause issues is if the Microsoft created application would show the video without the advertising.
Not the case at all. Google is being a little bully.

RE: Pot meet Kettle
By jdonkey123 on 1/3/2013 2:21:27 PM , Rating: 2
A normally valid argument, but because Youtube has such an extreme market share in streaming video, they are subject to special scrutiny to insure that they do not abuse their market position to hinder unrelated competition (Mobile device OS share.)

I don't have a strong opinion either way, but MS has been the target of vigorous antitrust enforcement actions for very analogous kinds of practices.

MS comes off pretty whiny, but their real point is that what's good for the goose, must be good for the gander.

RE: Pot meet Kettle
By BillyBatson on 1/3/2013 7:24:25 PM , Rating: 3
Not only has IE been my fav browser for the last well forever, but I would absolutely love if they offered it as an app for my iPhone.

RE: Pot meet Kettle
By vXv on 1/4/2013 6:05:46 AM , Rating: 2
Apple wont allow that even if MS wanted to.
They don't allow any other browsers ... Chrome and the other browsers on iOS are very limited they are just a different UI for the apple provided webkit engine. A browser with its own engine wont be approved, That's the reason why there is no Firefox for iOS.

RE: Pot meet Kettle
By BillyBatson on 1/4/2013 1:53:21 PM , Rating: 2
I know :( that's why I said I would love it if they did. As long as I'm on iOS I will always be stuck with safari. IE is the only browser I would consider, no chrome, opera, Firefox, Netscape for me :)

"I'm an Internet expert too. It's all right to wire the industrial zone only, but there are many problems if other regions of the North are wired." -- North Korean Supreme Commander Kim Jong-il

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