- Amazon accuses Microsoft of restricting customer choice in the cloud computing market.
- CMA investigates the dominance of Amazon and Microsoft in the UK’s cloud computing industry.
- Changes to Microsoft’s terms of services make it difficult for customers to switch providers or use competitors’ services alongside.
- Financial viability concerns arise as customers may need to purchase a separate license for Microsoft’s software products.
- Google submitted a similar letter last week, expressing concerns about Microsoft’s practices disadvantaging rivals.
- Microsoft responds, highlighting the competitive nature of the UK’s cloud computing market and various sources of competition.
- Ongoing regulatory scrutiny reflects the intense competition and complex dynamics within the cloud computing industry.
Amazon has voiced concerns to Britain’s antitrust authority, accusing its rival Microsoft of adopting business practices that limit customer choice in the cloud computing market. This marks the second major company to criticize Microsoft’s operations in the ongoing probe by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) into the UK’s cloud computing industry.
In a letter published on Tuesday on the CMA’s website, Amazon highlighted changes to Microsoft’s terms of services, making it challenging for customers to switch to alternative cloud providers or utilize competitors’ services alongside Microsoft’s. Amazon argued that purchasing a separate license for many of Microsoft’s software products, even if the customer already owns the software, often renders choosing a provider other than Microsoft financially unviable.
This comes after Google submitted a similar letter to the CMA last week, claiming that Microsoft’s business practices put its rivals at an unfair disadvantage. Google made several recommendations, including pushing Microsoft to enhance interoperability for customers using its Azure service alongside other cloud programs and prohibiting the withholding of security updates from those who switch.
Microsoft responded to the CMA, asserting that the cloud computing market in the UK remains competitive. In its submission, Microsoft emphasized the presence of various sources of competition, including Google, Oracle, IBM, and other cloud players who are investing significantly in global cloud infrastructure to meet demand and compete vigorously for customer workloads.
The ongoing investigation underscores the intense competition and complex dynamics within the cloud computing industry, as major players navigate regulatory scrutiny and work to maintain their market positions.