When customers buy a complete PC, then they must live with the fact that it, software is already installed. This was decided by the European Court of Justice (ECJ). This is according to a press release on the ruling (PDF) is a legitimate business practice when on the computer already has an operating system and other programs have been playing -. Even if some customers may not even need the software
The decision probably annoy especially a Frenchman who had sued Sony for unfair and deceptive business practice. He had bought a Sony Laptop with Windows Vista, but refused to sign the license agreement of the operating system when the computer.
Instead, he turned to Sony by saying that he does not need the pre-installed software , Proportionally, he called back the cost of unwanted programs. The Japanese electronics company offered to the buyer to take back the computer and to refund the purchase price. The rejected the client and sued instead of the manufacturer at the French Court of Cassation on compensation and damages.
“expectations of an essential part of consumers’
The court asked the ECJ to examine whether it is the coupling range of computer and pre-installed applications to an unfair deceptive business practice is. The European judges decided against and justify their judgment, according to the press release so that the pre-installed software “expectations of a substantial proportion of consumers satisfied”. They also assume that the customer has been informed sufficiently about before buying the software is part of the package.
Many consumers would probably want a different decision. Because almost all complete PC and notebooks, it is common that programs preinstalled. Computer manufacturers such as Acer, Asus and HP deliver next to the operating system, for example, with even video editing software, DVD burning tools and multimedia player. What programs are, on the purchaser’s control. The user can either buy a PC with the software offered or even not at all. Even if the customers remove the unwanted programs again – paid they have for the purchase price in any case
If the malicious software to fix them
For software companies. however, the preinstall is an elegant way to distribute their products. Often it is in the software only to demo versions, which are of limited use, and must be activated with costs, for example after a certain time. This benefits not only the software vendor that can promote its products with it. Also, the PC manufacturer earned extra money by demanding commissions that distribute the software to its customers.
But that can also be dangerous. In the past year about the software Superfish for excitement, a program that has been included on many Lenovo computers provided. The software was supposed to show advertising and discount offers from the fishing net – but the program also opened a security hole for criminals. Since the security certificate was so poorly protected, attackers were able to infiltrate itself in secure corporate networks in order to read news or check online banking.
For Sony the lawsuit is particularly annoying. Actually the company is out of the laptop business. The software giant had set the PC division two years ago, as previously, sales of PC had shrunk by ten percent. The Vaio brand sold Sony to a Japanese investment fund
About the Author
Jörg Breithut searches from Stuttgart after topics on the Internet. And she writes there also clean again.
- blog of Jörg Breithut