Ongoing regulatory scrutiny of Microsoft’s dominant market position in enterprise software has reached fever pitch as research analyst GlobalData finds the company registering the highest number of media filings amongst its Big Tech competitors.

On 31 August, Microsoft announced plans to unbundle its video conferencing app Teams from its suite of Office products for its European customers in response to a European Commission antitrust probe.

And today (2 September) Microsoft announced that it will remove legacy word processing application, WordPad, from any future Windows releases. While killing a legacy application in favour of a paid-for app Microsoft Word makes business sense, the company may be facing the prospect of further forced divestments or unbundling of some of it other popular apps, across various global markets.

Microsoft registered almost double the media mentions relating to technology regulation than any of its Big Tech competitors from January 2018-July 2023, according to GlobalData's 2023 thematic intelligence report on technology regulation.

The company's second quarter financial results alluded to Microsoft's increasing regulatory challenges: "laws and regulations relating to the handling of personal data that may impede the adoption of our services or result in increased costs, legal claims, fines, or reputational damage."

Furthermore, technology regulation could have wider implications for the company's business strategy: "government litigation and regulatory activity relating to competition rules that may limit how we design and market our products," according to Microsoft's financial results statement for the quarter ending 30 June, 2023.

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By GlobalData

Our signals coverage is powered by GlobalData’s Thematic Engine, which tags millions of data items across six alternative datasets — patents, jobs, deals, company filings, social media mentions and news — to themes, sectors and companies. These signals enhance our predictive capabilities, helping us to identify the most disruptive threats across each of the sectors we cover and the companies best placed to succeed.