European Union court ruled last month that search engines like Google should be able to remove personal links of users on request. Google has already started implementing this Right To Be Forgotten request form last month, and as per Search Engine Land, it has been taking in about 10,000 requests per day. This law applies for Bing too. Microsoft Bing last month revealed that they are working on a special process for residents of the European Union to request blocks of specific privacy-related search results on Bing in response to searches on their names. In a statement to NYT on Wednesday, Microsoft said, “Developing an appropriate system is taking us some time, We expect to launch a form through which users can make requests soon.” While Google had over 70,000 requests so far, Microsoft has received a small fraction of that number. Source: NYT ...

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In an email sent to customers in the European Union, Microsoft announced that they will no longer charge customers with VAT tax during their purchase of Skype Credits. So, customers can only pay for the amount of credit they require at the point-of-purchase. Previously, the Luxembourg VAT rate of 15% generally applies if you are located in the EU and Skype products are purchased and used within the EU although products purchased in Switzerland attracts a local 8% VAT rate. The changes below are effective from 28 July 2014: Pay As You Go, Skype Credit, and Auto-recharge: For Pay As You Go calls, VAT is charged when you make the call. Call rates will be exactly what you pay for your calls, inclusive of taxes.  This makes it easy for you to clearly see how much your calls made from Skype cost. More information on our PAYG rates can be ...

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European Union court ruled last week that search engines like Google should be able to remove personal links of users on request. Google has already started implementing this Right To Be Forgotten request form last month, and as per Search Engine Land, it has been taking in about 10,000 requests per day. This law applies for Bing too. But, Microsoft Bing team is still working on implementing this process. Here is the statement from Microsoft, We’re currently working on a special process for residents of the European Union to request blocks of specific privacy-related search results on Bing in response to searches on their names.  Given the many questions that have been raised about how the recent ruling from the Court of Justice of the European Union should be implemented, developing an appropriate system is taking us some time.  We’ll be providing additional information about making requests soon. Source: Bing ...

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European Commission started its anti-trust investigations against Google few years back and Google tried to convince EU couple of times with its new proposals and failed miserably. Today, EC announced that it has obtained an improved commitments proposal from Google in the context of the ongoing antitrust investigation on online search and search advertising. In its proposal, Google has now accepted to guarantee that whenever it promotes its own specialised search services on its web page (e.g. for products, hotels, restaurants, etc.), the services of three rivals, selected through an objective method, will also be displayed in a way that is clearly visible to users and comparable to the way in which Google displays its own services. This principle will apply not only for existing specialised search services, but also to changes in the presentation of those services and for future services. Commission Vice President in charge of competition policy, Joaquín Almunia ...

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In a bit of good news for Microsoft, the European Union has approved the Microsoft/Nokia deal without any conditions.  Regulators in the United States, India, Russia, Israel and Turkey have also approved the Nokia deal. 99.7% of Nokia shareholders approved the deal two weeks ago. Mergers: Commission clears acquisition of Nokia’s mobile device business by Microsoft The European Commission has cleared under the EU Merger Regulation the proposed acquisition of most of Nokia Corporation’s devices & services business (the “D&S business”) by Microsoft Corporation. The D&S business mainly produces and sells smartphones and feature phones. The Commission concluded that the transaction would not raise any competition concerns, in particular because there are only modest overlaps between the parties’ activities and the links between Microsoft’s mobile operating systems, mobile applications and enterprise mail server software with Nokia’s smart mobile devices are unlikely to lead to competitors being shut out from the ...

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The year long lack of a browser ballot screen did nothing to stem market share loss by Internet Explorer in Europe A technical oversight by Microsoft may hit the company with a $7billion+ fine leveed by the EU.  Europe’s antitrust chief announced Microsoft may face a fine of up to 10% of Microsoft’s global annual turnover -which is up to $7.37 billion (based on figures from 2012)- because Microsoft failed to include a ‘browser choice’ screen for European users in the latest version of Windows 7 in the Service Pack 1 update in February 2011, ‘”The fault is there, it has been there for more than a year and it is clear that we need to react,” said European Competition Commissioner Joaquin Almunia, adding: “It is not only the distortion of competition during this period which concerns us; it is very serious, from my point of view, that the remedies ...

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