EC to include Teams as part of antitrust charges despite Microsoft concessions – Computerworld

The origin of the EC Microsoft Teams investigation dates back to July 2020 when enterprise messaging application Slack, which has since been bought by Salesforce, originally filed a competition complaint against Microsoft.

That complaint alleged that the tech giant was engaging in the “illegal and anti-competitive practice of abusing its market dominance to extinguish competition in breach of European Union competition law” by “force installing it for millions, blocking its removal, and hiding the true cost to enterprise customers.”

This was around the same time apps such as Slack and Teams, which allow corporate workers in disparate locations to collaborate and share files via chat, exploded in popularity during the remote work mandates of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Industry continues to have questions

Apparently, despite Microsoft’s unbundling, rivals still have concerns that the company will make Teams run more seamlessly on its own software than theirs, according to the FT report. They also have concerns over data portability that could hinder existing Teams users from making the switch to rival apps, according to the report.

Indeed, questions remain for an industry that watches with keen interest whether Microsoft is sincere in “following the fairness principle in both letter and spirit,” noted Pareekh Jain, CEO of EIIRTrend & Pareekh Consulting.

“Apart from price bundling concerns,” the question also remains whether Microsoft is “facilitating users to freely transfer between videoconferencing apps with the right experience and performance,” he said.


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