European Vista and XP to Get Browser Ballot Screen Too

By | July 28, 2009 | 27 Comments


NeoWin.net writes:

Microsoft has confirmed that it will be distributing a ballot screen software update to users, in Europe, of Windows XP and Windows Vista.

According to TechFlash Opera’s chief technology officer, Hakon Wium Lie, suggested that displaying the IE logo could result in a natural bias toward Internet Explorer. “We’re not sure about the use of logos,” Lie said. “The blue ‘e’ has become so associated with the Internet in general, due to the bundling with Windows. We think using the blue “e” might not be such a good idea.”

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About (Author Profile)


Vygantas is a former web designer whose projects are used by companies such as AMD, NVIDIA and departed Westood Studios. Being passionate about software, Vygantas began his journalism career back in 2007 when he founded FavBrowser.com. Having said that, he is also an adrenaline junkie who enjoys good books, fitness activities and Forex trading.

  • ps

    It is slowly becoming pathetic..

    What is the next step? ‘we don’t like that our browser has to be downloaded not from our competitors servers’

    ‘we dont like that our browser has to be written by our stuff instead of our competitors’ one’

    opera is the worst case of achievement by whining ever :/

    • Thoe

      Are you saying that he is wrong about his assessment of the icon situation? Do you have any arguments to the contrary? Or are you just busy whining about Opera?

      • Vygantas Lipskas

        Well, if people believe that blue E/IE = internet, they will pick IE anyway, just because they haven’t heard about any other web browsers.

        I mean, lets say you are not familiar with gadgets and see the following (at same price):

        Sony
        Unknown
        Unknown
        Unknown
        Unknown

        Which one would you chose?

        • Thoe

          Wasn’t that exactly his point? People will recognize the blue E and maybe pick IE, which was what he was saying.

          • Vygantas Lipskas

            So it’s not icon only then, name itself is well known too. Unless Opera would like it to be hidden/changed as well?

            Even if there is no icon and you can still see “IE”, people will pick it anyway. No point to change icon, that’s what I am saying.

          • Thoe

            Opera, Firefox and Chrome could easily be called “X Internet Browser”, and people would see “Internet” for all of them. Apparently IE isn’t that known by name, only by the blue E.

        • http://my.opera.com/rafaelluik Rafael

          But in that case we don’t have IE, Unknown, Unknown, Unknown. We have a list bringing quick info about the browsers, I think people must read it before clicking on IE (at least would read, even if the final choice is IE).

          Anyway, I couldn’t ever thought Opera would get this far in the history, that’s really great at moment in case the logos not are removed.

          P.S.: I support Opera, I’m just trying keep the rights of Microsoft too.

          • Thoe

            Microsoft’s rights were no longer relevant the moment they broke the law.

          • http://www.favbrowser.com Vygantas Lipskas

            To me if IE icon gets removed as per request, it would look like Opera is “forcing” less techy users to chose browser other than IE.

          • Thoe

            Opera can’t force anyone, Vygantas. It’s the EC which runs the process. Google, Mozilla and Opera are only on board in an advisory role. There is no force here from either of them.

  • http://my.opera.com/rafaelluik Rafael

    kkkkkkkkkkk
    I can’t believe Opera still dissatisfied, I don’t think logos are bad idea.
    In the page screenshot showed in article I think it’s clear to user to decide what browser he want and without the logos it would be ugly.

    The EU COMISSION already accepted anyway, that’s great.

    NEXT STEP? -> ATTACKING APPLE *-*

    • Thoe

      So you are saying that his point is not valid? That logo recognition could affect this whole thing?

  • Grrblt

    Well, now it’s getting silly. People who automatically go for their familiar icon would just go for the familiar/more logical name Internet Explorer anyway.

    • Thoe

      Exactly his point.

      • Grrblt

        And then what? We blank out the product names too? You get to choose between Browser A, Browser B, Browser C and Browser D? That’s going to be stupid and not help competition.

        The mock-up picture is perfect IMO. The major browsers all get an equal amount of space. They all get their names, logos and a 20 word long catchy description.

        Don’t see what’s to complain about here. Those who pick IE only because of the logo will pick IE unless you force them to get something else. Those who stop to read the page and think for two seconds (=users who Opera has a chance of getting) will not pick according to logo.

        • Thoe

          Opera, Firefox and Chrome could easily be called “X Internet Browser”, and people would see “Internet” for all of them. Apparently IE isn’t that known by name, only by the blue E.

          The point is that the blue E is what most people think is the internet.

  • ps

    geting one company to forcefuly advertise and support other products is wrong. EU actions should go in direction of removing MS advantage, not into making MS pay for other companies blunders.

    whining about icon is wrong also – Opera had a chance to make it’s icon well known and popular – it was opera who decided against revealing icon in most mobile solutions they offer. it was opera that signed a deal with nintendo – and now it is “wii channel”, not “opera channel”. bad decisions have bad consequences.

    why OTHER company should make up for it and advertise Opera?

    By this logic firefox logo should go, too. it is also well known, and most people will choose familiar logo over some (very not pretty) Opera’ ‘O’.

    btw, how on earth is a user suposed to configure his access point (via browser) to download a browser if he hasnt got a browser?

    • Somebody

      I think IE will be installed by default, but when the user starts the browser for the first time, the ballot screen will be displayed allowing him to select the browser he wants.
      Also, Microsoft has promised that Windows Update’s dependency on IE will be removed in the future.

      • Somebody

        Here is the complete proposal from Microsoft :

        http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/press/2009/jul09/07-24statement.mspx

        • ps

          thnx.

          I have to say, that the ballot screen sure doesnt look nice, but I think it is perfectly fair play ground for everyone.

          IE icon isnt the same blue icon, but a rather blue-yellowish banner, that isnt a synonymous to ‘internet’ I thought Opera cried about.

          Next step I think for Opera is to argue about browser’ order…

    • Thoe

      geting one company to forcefuly advertise and support other products is wrong. EU actions should go in direction of removing MS advantage, not into making MS pay for other companies blunders.

      The bottom line here is that MS broke the law, and other companies have had to pay for Microsoft’s blunders. Now Microsoft must face the consequences of its actions.

      whining about icon is wrong also

      What “whining”? Are you denying the fact that most people associate the blue e with “internet”? Do you actually have an ARGUMENT and not just ad hominems?

      it was opera who decided against revealing icon in most mobile solutions they offer. it was opera that signed a deal with nintendo – and now it is “wii channel”, not “opera channel”. bad decisions have bad consequences.

      So you think Opera can order their CUSTOMERS to show the Opera icon?

      why OTHER company should make up for it and advertise Opera?

      Not just Opera, but several alternative browsers. It must do so because it broke the law.

      By this logic firefox logo should go, too. it is also well known, and most people will choose familiar logo over some (very not pretty) Opera’ ‘O’.

      Except Lie never said that “Firefox logo should go”. Why are you inventing things like this and attacking people instead of coming up with a rational argument? You are not strenthening your case by lying.

      btw, how on earth is a user suposed to configure his access point (via browser) to download a browser if he hasnt got a browser?

      Indeed, which is why the ballot is a better solution than removing choice completely.

  • Somebody

    I think Opera has achieved something with the ballot screen for browsers and should stop now before the bad press starts back firing on them. Already a lot of people think of Opera as whiners. If I was heading Opera, i would tell Hakum Lie to lie low for a while :) .
    Opera should be happy about the victory with the browser ballot screen and should stop making suggestions like ballot screen in Linux and the logo issue. Even if they were right ( i dont think they are ), it would only lead to bad press and nothing more.

    • ps

      bad press is better than no press as they say

      Opera certainly hasnt got much press coverage, even after reinwenting the web

      • Thoe

        Actually, Opera gets a lot of press coverage. Especially for Unite. This is just the icing on the cake :)

        • nobody

          press about unite is mostly bad as for now..

          people got pissed off by yet another ‘we are going to reinwent something’ and all they got was.. something completely not needed.

          guardian, the register, etc titles were ALL unimpressed, yet at the same time raised security questions, that opera failed to clear – saying ‘we are sure that it is ok’ isnt clearing issues, it is wasting air

          if opera has so much press coverage, can you link.. like 10 recent – from last week – articles that are not reprints of opera press releases? with lot of coverage it should be easy, shouldnt it?

          • Daniel Hendrycks

            Oh will you shut up already, do you expect an alpha release to work perfectly? They are unimpressed because the proxy is always down, which is NO.1 right in priorities and it is being fixed. As for security I think they should do something like Pwn2Own to prove that it is safe since some people will not take Jon’s word.

  • http://my.opera.com/IceArdor IceArdor

    Why does only Europe get to benefit from this suit? It’s not like there isn’t the same problem in the United States. Is Microsoft just waiting for someone and their lawyers in America to copy what the EU did?