Google and Microsoft call a truce

It’s a new day for Google and Microsoft, which have been at each other’s throats for a long time. The two companies are dropping regulatory complaints against each other, they said Friday.

“Our companies compete vigorously, but we want to do so on the merits of our products, not in legal proceedings,” a Google spokesman told SiliconBeat.

Microsoft told Recode pretty much the same thing, the words “competing vigorously” included.

So they probably won’t become BFFs anytime soon.

The move, which has been months in the making between the companies’ legal department, comes on the heels of another EU antitrust action against Google this week, this time over the dominance of its Android mobile operating system. Last year, the EU brought antitrust charges against Google over its search practices in Europe — and Microsoft was one of the complainants that helped those charges along. (Way before then, Google reportedly had a part in the EU going after Microsoft over Windows 7 and browser choice.)

From now on, the two sides are vowing to talk to each first before complaining to regulators around the world. And Microsoft has dropped out of FairSearch and ICOMP, which both support antitrust actions against Google.

The companies have gotten more friendly since changes at the top. Satya Nadella, who became Microsoft CEO in 2014, tweeted congratulations when Sundar Pichai was appointed Google CEO last August. A month later, the two companies announced an end to a five-year  patent fight over smartphones and Microsoft’s Xbox.

But even before that, Microsoft ended its Scroogled campaign — which included ads and anti-Google merchandise — in early 2015.

 

Illustration from the Orange County Register/KRT archives

 

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