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Microsoft’s Cloud Sparks complaint to the EU by Amazon-Linked Group

A collection of Microsoft Corp. rivals, including OVH and Amazon.com Inc.’s AWS, have filed an antitrust complaint.

A collection of Microsoft Corp. rivals, including OVH and Amazon.com Inc.’s AWS, have filed an antitrust complaint with European Union watchdogs alleging the software giant is using unfair licensing practices to lure customers in the region to its cloud infrastructure. .

CISPE, a European policy group for cloud companies, said it is calling for an investigation into Microsoft’s business model before some companies are banned from the market and cause “material harm to customers”. It is the fourth current complaint against Microsoft with the Brussels-based European Commission.

Bowing to months of pressure from rival cloud providers, Microsoft announced changes to software license terms earlier this year to make it easier for customers of rival cloud service companies in Europe to move their existing software to these other networks. The changes went into effect on October 1.

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But CISPE called the changes a “smokescreen” that fails to “address the harm to consumers and providers” already outlined in a previous complaint to the EU.

Microsoft, whose $69 billion takeover bid for Activision Blizzard Inc. Tuesday was earmarked for an in-depth EU assessment, said in a statement that the licensing changes it had recently introduced “give customers and cloud providers around the world even more options for running and offering our software in the cloud.”

It said it was “committed to addressing valid licensing issues and supporting a competitive environment in which all providers can thrive.”

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