Hot on the heels of the EU forcing Microsoft to stop bundling Teams into Office in Europe, Zoom’s CEO is suggesting that the US Federal Trade Commission might want to look into doing the same stateside.
Bloomberg reports that Zoom CEO Eric Yuan made the remark at the Goldman Sachs Communacopia + Technology Conference in response to a question about Microsoft unbundling Teams in Europe. The unbundling comes after EU regulators opened an investigation in July in response to a complaint by Slack, another Teams competitor that Microsoft more or less crushed by adding Teams to Office 365 for no additional cost. “You should ask this question to the FTC as well,” Bloomberg quotes Yuan as saying.
He’s got a point about bundling! Vox Media uses Google Meet now because it’s part of our Google Workspace account, though we used to use Zoom. As for Teams, I’ve never used it, but there’s still a little Teams icon in my PC’s system tray because Microsoft jammed it in there when I upgraded to Windows 11, and it launches automatically whenever I turn on my computer.
And Microsoft is constantly trying to use its products to get you to use its other products. There are malware-like pop-ups in Windows 11 trying to guilt you into using Edge. Edge periodically resets my default search engine to Bing. Windows ignores your default browser choice when you click certain links in the OS! There’s a Bing Chat icon in my Edge sidebar and in my dang Windows Start Menu. It all feels a little desperate.
Microsoft Teams is very successful — as of June, it had around 300 million daily active users. How much of that success is due to the fact that it’s bundled into Office and preinstalled on every Windows 11 PC? We might soon find out.