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Case Title:

Microsoft Vs. Windows

Publication Year : 2004

Authors: Pankaj S & G Srikanth

Industry: Information Technology and IT Enabled Services


Case Code: COS0009

Teaching Note: Not Available

Structured Assignment: Not Available

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Legal proceedings were started against Microsoft in the early 1990s, looking into possible anti-trust violations by the Redmond-based software giant. This culminated in Justice Jackson ordering Microsoft to be broken into two, in 2000. An appeals court judgement overruled Justice Jackson's verdict, but upheld the view that Microsoft had indeed used its monopoly position to further its own interests and to kill competition. By the end of the 1990s, Microsoft's legal woes had taken on a transatlantic dimension, with the European Commission also investigating alleged monopolistic practices by Microsoft. The EC verdict, in March 2004 asked Microsoft to break up Windows- Microsoft's operating system- so as not to include software add-ons. The verdict is still up for appeal.

Pedagogical Objectives:

  • To discuss the possible spin-offs for Microsoft's future
  • To discuss the backdrop of the legal verdicts based on build on facts from the past to build up possible future business scenarios

Keywords : Microsoft versus Windows, Monopoly, Anti-trust violations, William H (Bill) Gates, Steven Ballmer, Justice Thomas Penfold Jackson, Mario Monti's Microsoft verdict, European Competition Commission, Windows operating system, US Justice Department, Business ethics, Microsoft Internet Explorer versus Netscape Navigator, Competitive Strategies Case Study, Microsoft Windows Media Player versus Real Media Player, Microsoft rulings, American software industry

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