Microsoft may finally see light at the end of its antitrust tunnel - or at least a faint glimmer.
Last week the U.S. Department of Justice and the software juggernaut filed a joint status update with the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia in which they indicated the technical documentation requirements of the 2002 antitrust settlement agreement are "substantially complete." This week, TechCrunch writer Robin Wauters says the European Union has dropped charges relating to Microsoft's browser bundling practices.
In a story published in The Washington Post, Wauters writes:
Under the terms of the settlement agreement, Microsoft will need to implement a ballot screen that lets users in Europe replace Internet Explorer with another browser, starting March 2010. The deal also means computer manufacturers will now be able to ship PCs in Europe that do not come pre-installed with IE.
The browser ballot will reportedly offer users a choice between Chrome, Opera, Firefox, Safari and Internet Exploer.
EU competition commissioner Neelie Kroes also hopes the move will motivate browser makers to up their games in terms of innovation and providing a better user experience, the story says.