Microsoft attracts scrutiny from rivals and UK over software bundling practices

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What you need to know

  • A new report indicates that the UK's Competition and Markets Authority is actively listening to Microsoft rivals regarding complaints they may have about Microsoft's bundling practices becoming too dangerous.
  • The perceived issue is that by the company emphasizing the interconnectedness of OneDrive, Office, and Microsoft Teams with Windows, it's making it harder for rival companies to get their own communications, productivity, and storage platforms in the limelight for PC users to see.
  • Similar complaints have been made in the EU as well as by major companies, including Slack.

Tell us if you've heard this one before: Microsoft's bundling practices are irking rivals and attracting government attention. That should sound familiar, as recently an entire coalition of small companies (relatively speaking) formally asked the EU to step in and put a stop to Microsoft's current bundling behaviors. Not to mention, similar complaints have also been made by major companies such as Slack.

Though linked with the UK's Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) this time around, the gist of concerns is much the same as the other incidents (via The Telegraph). There is a worry that OneDrive, Teams, Office, and Windows are all bound too closely together, leaving little room for competing software to have a fair shot.

The CMA is actively listening for complaints and chatting with Microsoft rivals to hear their side of the story, an action that may ultimately precede an investigation or formal review. However, neither avenue of escalation has been announced at this time.

If the UK's CMA sounds familiar, it's because it recently made the news regarding its NVIDIA-Arm merger report, wherein it outlined a multitude of concerns with the deal. Not long after, the U.S.'s FTC upped the ante and sued to have the merger halted.

Robert Carnevale

Robert Carnevale is the News Editor for Windows Central. He's a big fan of Kinect (it lives on in his heart), Sonic the Hedgehog, and the legendary intersection of those two titans, Sonic Free Riders. He is the author of Cold War 2395. Have a useful tip? Send it to