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Has The Lack Of Competition In The Operating Systems Market Harmed Innovation In Terms Of The Development Of Window's Operating System? In Other Words, Is Xp All It Should Be?

1365 words - 5 pages

The basic issue posed in the above question is Microsoft's monopolistic practices with software run solely in their computer operating systems (OS). Can we afford to allow America's largest corporation to get away with monopolistic practices that will affect the entire computer software industry? To allow this, would create a legal precedent so strong that it will be impossible to stop or control any other monopolistic practices in all other business and markets.The lack of competition in the operating systems market hasn't harmed the innovation in terms of the development of Window's OS, but it has reduced the options and alternatives available to consumers to utilize other competitive software not owned or subcontracted by Microsoft. MS Windows XP could be all it should be, but how can we answer that question when we are not allowed the opportunity to use other software that is not compatible with XP? How do you know that the forest is warm and humid when you live in the desert and are not allowed to get out of it?I will show how monopolistic practices harm the consumer's ability to choose the best product possible and create an unhealthy software market that will result in limiting the innovation, production and pricing of more efficient or desirable products. I will do this by providing facts and opinions from several different reports and write-ups from subject matter experts, software professional news reports, papers, and documents. I will also include facts and opinions based on my personal experience in the subject; to include situations where problems could have been avoided or the product improved if there was a less limited market.I would like to start this discussion by analyzing the basic question of this subject: Is XP all it should be? It all depends on the consumer's needs and the ability to utilize software and programs in MS Windows XP. The key question is: How can consumers know what's best for them, when Microsoft makes their product incompatible with other software? The lack of competition by itself will reduce the pool of available software products. Using the operating system as the core of its market power, Microsoft freezes out competitors with incompatibilities, builds in features to impede or disable competing programs, withdraws support for non-Microsoft applications, and locks in customers with constant imitation of competing products.1The legal definition of monopoly is: "the abuse of free commerce by which one or more individuals have procured the advantage of selling alone all of a particular kind of merchandise, to the detriment of the public".2 By this definition, it is obvious that Microsoft has indulged in monopolistic practices by making other software products not owned or sanctioned by them incompatible to be run with their operating system (OS). What company will invest time, money and effort in researching, designing and producing a software product when they know they can't profit from it because it is...

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