Microsoft and EU Work Out Browser Ballot Screen

By | October 8, 2009

Microsoft and EU Work Out Browser Ballot Screen
Microsoft and European Commission have finally come to an agreement on a new ballot screen with a total of 12 web browsers. Updated version includes a couple of changes and treaty for as long as 5 years. Testers will be able to test new screen with the following modifications:

• Make it so competing browsers can be downloaded from the ballot screen more quickly and easily
• Ensure equivalent placement on the Windows 7 taskbar for Internet Explorer and all other browser icons
• Add introductory information, improving the design of the ballot page about each browser to help users make more informed choices
• Alphabetize the list of browsers so that the five most popular are listed first (by vendor), followed by the next seven most popular (also alphabetically ordered), so that 12 choices are displayed in total
• Provide the browser ballot to users for five years

Microsoft has also commented on this: “We welcome today’s announcement by the European Commission to move forward with formal market testing of Microsoft’s proposal relating to web browser choice in Europe,” said Microsoft general counsel Brad Smith in a statement. “We also welcome the opportunity to take the next step in the process regarding our proposal to promote interoperability with a broad range of our products.”

Once users have confirmed that they are connected to the Internet, the following screen would appear:

Microsoft and EU Work Out Browser Ballot Screen
Picture source: ArsTechnica

Overall, both sides seem to be happy with a new agreement and overall feedback was positive as well.

Download ballot screen .pdf.


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 Having said that, he is also an adrenaline junkie who enjoys good books, fitness activities and Forex trading.

Comments (16)

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  1. Rafael says:

    Okay, that’s good, but what kind of order is being used?

  2. Fyrd says:

    So it seems to be:

    Apple Safari
    Google Chrome
    Internet Explorer
    Mozilla Firefox

    Seems wrong to me. Who says “Apple Safari”? If you’re going to have “Apple Safari” You need to have “Windows Internet Explorer”, which is its official name.

    Alphabetical order is stupid anyway, what’s stopping Opera from renaming themselves “Apera”?

  3. Sergiu says:

    Its “Microsoft Windows Internet Explorer Browser For Windows 7 a.k.a The Worst Browser Ever” (: just kidding

  4. Sergiu says:

    Officialy its “Windows Internet Explorer 8” but the company name is Microsoft so i think it is “Microsoft Windows Internet Explorer 8”
    or just “Microsoft Internet Explorer 8” it will be a lot easier if it would be called “Internet 8” people dont know what a browser is even the Google video wont help them so its better that way.

  5. Simonoid says:

    What about the other 7 browsers? Which ones did they choose to include?

  6. Emil Ivanov says:

    It’s stupid that customers have to choose their browser and at the same time viewing that page in Internet Explorer.
    Couldn’t they just made a plain UI or maybe Microsoft want it that way to catch more users on IE…

    • Foo says:

      Because the ballot screen is only relevant if the default browser is set to IE:

      (11) Microsoft will distribute a ballot screen software update to users of Windows PC
      Client Operating Systems within the EEA by means of Windows Update. Users
      who have Internet Explorer set as their default web browser will be prompted
      with this ballot screen. The ballot screen will give users an opportunity to choose
      whether and which competing web browser(s) to install. The ballot screen will
      display in an unbiased way icons of and basic identifying information on the most
      widely-used web browsers.

  7. Dels says:

    the really stupid is why they offer to install IE8? is the ballot screen is still IE7? or the IE was not installed before? then what is the ballot screen based? portable IE? oh i see it still use MSIE Core, so why don’t give us a plain UI for that ballot screen?

    OoO and wait a sec… now we need internet connection to download a web browser… with what we download it? internet explorer? how those with the dial-up? why they don’t bundled the installer for each browser in their Windows? or it’s prohibited? or let’s the OEM do that…

    • Foo says:

      According to the documentation you choose one or more browsers you wish to have installed via the ballot screen. You can probably also add/remove IE via the ballot screen if you change your mind.

      now we need internet connection to download a web browser

      You need an internet connection to use it anyway…

      with what we download it? internet explorer?

      Obviously you’ll use cURL!

      how those with the dial-up?

      The same way as everyone else… oh, wait, you meant “How about those who use ‘dial-up'”?
      Well, a browser download is around 8MB so with a 56kbps you’ll get an estimated download time of about 17minutes. Not bad for someone who still lives in the stone-age.

      why they don’t bundled the installer for each browser in their Windows? or it’s prohibited? or let’s the OEM do that…

      Most likely they don’t want to waste money looking into that option. OEMs can already pre-install whatever they want.

  8. ben2talk says:

    In my opinion it’s a half-measure. Notice the scroll-bar. These are simply the first five options – and given the intelligence of Windows Users, only a small minority will scroll.

    The explanation should come first, and the selection screen should come later – with a selection of maybe 9 browsers (full-screen layout) like a speed dial.