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Google joins EU in fight against Microsoft

Hopes to get tech giant to un-bundle IE browser from Windows OS

Google has announced its participation as a third party in the European Commission's efforts to get Microsoft to un-bundle Internet Explorer from Windows operating systems.

"We are applying to become a third party in the European Commission's proceeding," Sundar Pichai, Google's vice president of product management, posted at the company’s official blog.

Mozilla Corp, the makers of the Firefox OS, had earlier been granted "interested third party" status in the same case, which means the company is now allowed to submit arguments to regulators.

Opera Software ASA, the Norwegian developer of Opera browser, filed the original complaint with the European Commission in late 2007, which states that Microsoft’s tying of the Internet Explorer browser to Windows violates EU treaty rules. Microsoft has just a couple of weeks left to respond to the EU’s claims.

Pichai said Google is getting involved because the field tilts towards Microsoft.

"The browser market is still largely uncompetitive, which holds back innovation for users," he said. "This is because Internet Explorer is tied to Microsoft's dominant computer operating system, giving it an unfair advantage over other browsers."