Microsoft is being quizzed by the antitrust department of European Union regulators related to its cloud business including the licensing deals. A formal investigation is said to be followed along with renewed scrutiny.
In the past decade, the European Commission fined the United States software company for breaching the bloc's antitrust rules and simultaneously failed to comply with the order of halting anti-competitive practices. The fine totaled about 1.6 billion euros.
Microsoft is now again on the radar of EU regulators following complaints filed by a couple of French and German companies including OVHcloud and NextCloud. It is alleged that Microsoft is using its dominant position to foreclose competition in the segment.
The EU regulators have asked the company whether its licensing deals in the cloud segment facilitate the rival companies to compete effectively. It is simultaneously questioned whether its native productivity apps and operating systems are required to complement the cloud infrastructure offering of the rivals.
The regulators are concerned to make available the software of Microsoft to its customers in all the environments and that of cloud service providers too.
Microsoft's cloud service is provided under the name of Azure. All the software, hardware and supporting infrastructure of its public cloud are managed as well as owned by the cloud provider. Customers access and manage the services through a web browser and only after creating an account with it.
Microsoft was founded by Bill Gates and Paul Allen in 1975 and is headquartered in Washington, US. It is a multinational tech company that produces personal computers, consumer electronics, computer software and several more related services. The company is best known for its Windows line of products, Internet Explorer and Office suite. It holds a good name among gamers for its Xbox consoles. Microsoft was ranked at 21st position by the Fortune 500 in 2020 in the list of largest US corporations with respect to total revenue.