Microsoft at a Crossroads: Future Trend-Setter or Future Par

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No one can deny the fact that Microsoft has had a colossal impact on computing and on technology in general. Microsoft has maintained a reputation for hiring the best and the brightest young minds in the world. Their software engineers have built much of the software that has dominated personal and business computing for the last two decades. However, Microsoft finds itself in an interesting dilemma that has been exacerbated by the current global economic downturn. For the first time in its relatively short history, Microsoft may be on the verge of losing a firm hold on a position of global technological dominance. Microsoft's preeminent position is being assaulted from all sides by worthy opponents: Mozilla Firefox, Apple Safari, and Google Chrome continue to erode Microsoft Internet Explorer's once seemingly indefatigable placement as the front running Internet web browser.

Linux, Mac OS X , and perceived deficiencies in the Windows Vista operating system have contributed to Microsoft Windows dropping below a 90% market share for the first time in more than 15 years. To make matters worse, the European Union has levied a total more than two billion U.S. dollars in fines against Microsoft for anti-competitive practices. Microsoft's flagellation in the European Union's pillory has attracted many of the company's competitors to pile on to their troubles. Google, Opera, and Mozilla are among the companies that have backed the European Union's antitrust proceedings against Microsoft. It seems that, right now, Microsoft might need a friend more than ever.

This makes the timing of Microsoft's decision to sue the makers of the Tom Tom GO gps navigation unit all the more questionable. Continued here:

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