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Google calls on UK watchdog to investigate Microsoft Azure

Published Dec 01, 2023 13:12 Updated Dec 01, 2023 13:40
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© Reuters. Google calls on UK watchdog to investigate Microsoft Azure
 
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Proactive Investors - Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) is facing mounting regulatory pressure over its Azure cloud-computing platform, with rival Google calling on Britain’s competition watchdog to take action against the Redmond tech giant’s alleged anti-competitive practices.

Google has accused Microsoft of implementing business practices that leave its cloud-computing rivals at a significant disadvantage, echoing UK media regulator Ofcom’s investigation launched in October.

Ofcom said that certain Azure features make it difficult for UK customers to use multiple cloud-computing providers.

Backing up these claims, Google has since pointed out Microsoft’s unfair licensing practices, accusing the group of enforcing higher costs on customers wishing to use Microsoft Windows on competing cloud services.

“With Microsoft’s licensing restrictions in particular, UK customers are left with no economically reasonable alternative but to use Azure as their cloud services provider, even if they prefer the prices, quality, security, innovations, and features of rivals,” Google said in its letter to the CMA.

In an interview with Reuters, a Microsoft spokesperson said: "As the latest independent data shows, competition between cloud hyperscalers remains healthy. In the second quarter of 2023 Microsoft and Google made equally small gains on AWS, which continues to remain the global market leader by a significant margin.”

Google, owned by Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOGL), is only a minor player in the UK cloud market, comprising roughly 5% to 10% of market share, while Microsoft Azure and Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) Web Services (AWS) have a combined 70% to 80%.

Read more on Proactive Investors UK

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Google calls on UK watchdog to investigate Microsoft Azure
 

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