The European Commission fined Microsoft a massive €899 million ($1.3 billion) for continued failure to honor the 2004 antitrust ruling against it, Commissioner for Competition Neelie Kroes said Wednesday. Europe's top competition authority has already fined the company €777.5 million -- €497 million in the original ruling plus a further €280.5 million for noncompliance. The latest punishment brings the total of fines to just under €1.7 billion ($2.6 billion) "for a clear disregard of its legal obligations," Kroes said in a news conference.
“The Commission's latest fine is a reasonable response to unreasonable actions by Microsoft,” Kroes said. Microsoft finally came into compliance with the 2004 ruling last October. Kroes said the latest fine -- the biggest yet -- is for noncompliance up to Oct. 22, 2007.
The software giant has over the past four years repeatedly tried to avoid complying with part of the Commission's ruling that ordered the company to detail communications protocols used by its Windows server operating system so that other manufacturers could build systems that interoperate smoothly with Windows.
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