As it turns out, it won't just be Windows 7
that'll be giving Europeans a choice of what web browser to use. In fact, the lengths that Microsoft is going to appease the European Commission is quite extreme. Ars Technica
did some digging and here's the fine print of the proposal. Within three to six months of the EC's approval, an update will be sent out to Europeans with Windows XP and Vista, labeled "high priority" or "important." User who install the update and have Internet Explorer as the default browser will see the ballot screen on next log in, which will show up to ten different browsers with at least a 0.5 percent share of the market in the European Economic Area (EEA). Users can then choose to download something new, ignore the screen, or defer until an indefinite time in the future. Windows 7 users will get the ballot update within two weeks of the Commission's decision or by its October 22nd launch
, whichever comes second. Extreme? You betcha -- but we can't argue over having more choice.