Canonical, a company that sponsors many free software projects and is tightly knit with the Ubuntu Linux distribution, says it will not file a complaint against Microsoft for anti-competitive behavior to the EU, like Opera did. Canonical is readying the release of Ubuntu 10.10 for download this Sunday, claiming it is the company's most consumer-friendly release to date. Ubuntu continues to struggle against Windows in the consumer market, and the fact that Microsoft is hundreds of times bigger than Canonical certainly does not help.
"There's no doubt Microsoft is dominant in the industry and has much more marketing muscle than we do," Steve George, vice president of business development at Canonical told PC Pro. "I don't think we've ever considered it. The improvements we're making to Ubunutu... are a better route for us to reach out to users and get a bigger user base. The strength in Ubuntu is our community and reach - through advocates who can spread the message. We have to find different ways of getting our message out."
Opera complained to the EU about Microsoft's anti-competitive behavior in regards to bundling Internet Explorer with Windows, back in December 2007. Microsoft offered a browserless version of Windows 7 in Europe, but that wasn't enough.
Microsoft ended up having to offer a browser ballot to appease EU regulators. The ballot randomly sorts the five most popular browsers (IE, Firefox, Chrome, Safari, and Opera) and lets users pick which they want to install. Opera said it saw an increase in downloads after the ballot launched but the browser maker's market share remains miniscule.