Google Asks to Join EU Microsoft Antitrust Case

Internet search giant Google has decided to weigh in on Microsoft and Internet Explorer by applying to be a third party in the European Commission's antitrust case against the company. Sundar Pichai, Google's vice president of product management, said the company filed the application because the Web browser market is "largely uncompetitive."

"Google believes that the browser market is still largely uncompetitive, which holds back innovation for users," Mr. Pichai said on the comany's blog. "This is because Internet Explorer is tied to Microsoft's dominant computer operating system, giving it an unfair advantage over other browsers."

He added that the mobile device market is a more competitive arena for Web browsers because Microsoft hasn't been able to bind Internet Explorer to a dominant operating system.

Firefox developer Mozilla joined the same case early in February as an interested third party and will be offering guidance on how the European Commission should proceed with the case against Microsoft. Google plans to do the same once it is on board, too.

"We learned a lot from launching our own Google Chrome browser last year and are hoping that Google's perspective will be useful as the European Commission evaluates remedies to improve the user experience and offer consumers real choices," Mr. Pichai said. "Of course creating a remedy that helps solve one problem without creating other unintended consequences isn't easy -- but the more voices there are in the conversation the greater the chances of success."