South Korean regulators fine Microsoft $32 million

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Wednesday, December 7, 2005

South Korean antitrust regulators fined the Microsoft company 33 billion Won (US$32m). It also ordered Microsoft to make substantial changes to the Windows operating system. Regulators demanded that Microsoft produce two different versions of Microsoft Windows within 180 days.

  • One version must be stripped of the Windows Media Player and instant messenger software.
  • The other version must come with links to Web pages that allow consumers to download competing versions of such software, the commission said.

These regulations will be in effect for the next ten years, but after five years Microsoft can request a review of the market.

A Microsoft spokesman said the company would appeal the decision in court.

"We are very disappointed with the commission's decision," said Tom Burt, a Microsoft vice president and deputy general counsel. "Ultimately, we will file a lawsuit in Korean court challenging the decision."

Similarily in March of last year, Microsoft was ordered by the European Union to pay €497 million for antitrust violations. Microsoft was also asked to share Windows operating system code with other companies and offer Windows without the media player.

Microsoft is also appealing this ruling.