Google backs EU's Microsoft inquiry

Google backs EU inquiry into Microsoft's alleged anti-competitive activity in the internet browser market

Google has offered its backing to the EU in its investigation into accusations of anti-competitive behaviour in Europe.

Google has said that it wants to add 'perspective' to the EU inquiry into Microsoft's dominance of the internet browser market with its web browser, Internet Explorer.

"We are applying to become a third party in the European Commission's proceeding," Google Chrome developer Sundar Pichai noted in a Google blog post.

"Google believes that the browser market is still largely uncompetitive, which holds back innovation for users. This is because Internet Explorer is tied to Microsoft's dominant computer operating system, giving it an unfair advantage over other browsers."

Opera complaint in 2007

The original complaint against Microsoft was made in 2007 by Norwegian browser company Opera, who said that bundling Internet Explorer with copies of Windows put competitors at a disadvantage.

The pace of accusations has gathered in recent months as investigators begin to close in on a ruling.

"The Commission is concerned that through the tying, Microsoft shields Internet Explorer from head-to-head competition with other browers, which is detrimental to the pace of product innovation and to the quality of products which consumers ultimately obtain," the Commision said in a report back in January 2009.