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EU Court Upholds, But Cuts Microsoft Anti-Trust Fine

Microsoft Surface Steve Ballmer - P 2012
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The European Commission had fined the software giant $1.12 billion in 2008, which has now been reduced to $1.07 billion.

LONDON - A European court on Wednesday upheld the EU anti-trust regulator's decision to fine software giant Microsoft, but slightly reduced the fine.

The European Commission had fined Microsoft €899 million ($1.12 billion) in 2008, but Europe's second-highest court has reduced that to €860 million euros ($1.07 billion), Reuters reported.

The 2008 fine marked a record at the time. The regulator back then argued that Microsoft had defied an antitrust decision previously and delayed the sharing of information designed to help competitors.

"The General Court essentially upholds the Commission's decision imposing a periodic penalty payment on Microsoft for failing to allow its competitors access to interoperability information on reasonable terms," the European court said in a statement.

Last week, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer unveiled iPad competitor Surface, which the company hopes will make it a big player in the growing tablet computer space.

Email: Georg.Szalai@thr.com

Twitter: @georgszalai