Welcome to the new year, same as the last year. If you thought the war between Google
(and Apple, and Amazon) was going to quiet down now that we've turned a proverbial page, think again. Dave Heiner, Microsoft's VP and Deputy General Counsel, has just posted a fairly pointed blog post surrounding its quest to resolve "search competition issues." Two years, Microsoft gave a high-five to the U.S. Federal Trade Commission and the European Commission when they opened their antitrust investigations into Google’s business practices.
But now, it appears that Google is on the verge of getting both of these entities off of its back, and Microsoft thinks Google will soon be getting off of the hook far too easily. According to Heiner: "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. 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."
In fact, he goes one step further and cites Google's willful efforts to prevent Windows Phone users from having a "fully featured YouTube app." He states plainly that he believes Google is "impeding competition in the marketplace." But is it really? Or is Windows Phone simply not a large enough platform for Google to invest in? Obviously, Henier's point of view is going to come with a hint of bias, but we can't imagine that a public burn like this is truly going to help relations between the two giants. Something tells us public humiliation isn't the best way to start a year...