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Microsoft Unveils Browser & Office Ballot Screens

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You may have almost forgotten the furore surrounding Windows 7 and Microsoft Office over the last six months, but the European Commission hasn't...

Today Microsoft has given updates and unveiled screenshots showing how it will comply with regulators requests to offer more choice for its two flagship products. Firstly, as part of the {Windows 7E debacle Microsoft will offer a "Web browser choice screen" to Internet Explorer users in Europe.
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This will come as an automatic download through Windows Update and is installed automatically. If IE is your default browser (but why oh why would it be?) then:

"The browser choice screen {above} will present you with a list of leading browsers," said Microsoft VP and Deputy General Counsel, Dave Heiner. "In keeping with our agreement with the European Commission, this list is presented in random order. You can also scroll to the right to see additional browsers, which are also presented in random order. The browsers that are listed and the content relating to them will be updated from time to time."

"The screen provides three options," he continued. "Click on 'Install' to install one of the listed browsers. Click on 'Tell me more' to get more information about any of the browsers. These links (and the browser logos and associated text) are provided by each browser vendor. Click on 'Select Later' to review the choice screen the next time you log onto your computer. This software update will also add a shortcut to your desktop, from which you can launch the choice screen at any time."
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As for Office, Neowin has revealed Microsoft will use a similar ballot screen to prompt users about which file format they would prefer to use: Office Open XML (OOXML) or OpenDocument (ODF) document formats. OOXML is the suite's default format, but Canadian software company i4i filed a patent dispute over the way Word uses these XML files. In December Microsoft surprisingly lost an appeal against i4i's sales injunction and has had to act quickly.

So can these matters now be drawn to a close? Highly unlikely...

Links:
Microsoft Official Browser Post Reaction
Office News via Neowin

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