Emerging Technology

Microsoft banning Firefox and Chrome on Windows RT, say Mozilla and Google

Andrew Sadauskas /

Mozilla Foundation, developers of the Firefox web browser, and Google have accused Microsoft of effectively banning competing browsers on its forthcoming Windows RT operating system.

In a statement, Mozilla accuses Microsoft of blocking access to key APIs in the new operating system, effectively preventing any modern third-party web browser from running on the platform.

In 1998, the US Department of Justice (DOJ) filed a lawsuit (United States V Microsoft) against Microsoft under the Sherman Antitrust Act for alleged anti-competitive behaviour against competing web browsers (including Netscape Navigator, a predecessor of Mozilla Firefox). After a successful appeal by Microsoft, the DOJ and Microsoft reached a settlement in November 2001.

Previously known as Windows 8 on ARM, Windows RT is a forthcoming operating system designed for tablets and other devices running on ARM-based processors, rather than the x86 Windows desktop PCs usually run on.

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Andrew Sadauskas

Andrew Sadauskas is a former journalist at SmartCompany and a former editor of TechCompany.

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