Chief technology officer is concerned case will be rushed

Opera exec demands ‘effective remedy’ in EU Microsoft case

Browser maker Opera has urged EU regulators to ensure they reach an effective solution rather than rushing to close the antitrust case against Microsoft.

Following an announcement from European Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes that she would like to reach a deal with Microsoft before the end of the year, Opera’s chief technology officer Hakon Wium Lie told Reuters: "We are slightly concerned about perhaps a premature settlement in this case."

"We are also eager to close the case but we want to make sure the settlement is effective. We think the current solution on the table will not be an effective settlement," he added. "We think they need to hear and listen to our comments."

The Commission brought formal charges against Microsoft in January this year, after Opera complained in 2007 about Internet Explorer being tied to the Windows operating system.

Microsoft has reportedly proposed a plan to install a ballot system to allow users to choose their browser. The EU Competition Commission is reviewing feedback from competitors and other interested parties.

"We think the ballot screen is a good starting point for discussion but the way they thought of implementing it, we think it is not an effective remedy," Wium Lie told Reuters, adding that he thought some users could confuse the screen with spam.

He also said computer manufacturers could potentially remove the ballot screen before consumers even saw the browser option.

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