In response to the EU's antitrust case against Microsoft many years ago, the company has announced that it won't be bundling Internet Explorer by default with Windows 7.
Instead, it'll provide an IE-less version to manufactuers, who'll then be able to choose whether they'd like to install IE, install a different browser, or install multiple browsers.
Although browser competition was almost non-existent when the lawsuit was filed, some years ago, today it's at its highest level ever with Firefox, Chrome, Safari and Opera all grabbing a significant piece of the pie. Firefox is particularly strong in Europe, with just over 31% market share, compared to IE's 59%.
Manuacturers who choose to add IE back in will be offered an "Internet Explorer 8 Pack" that'll allow them to reinstall the browser. However, if the manufacturer chooses not to install anything, the consumer will have to battle with a browserless operating system and no method of getting one from a website. Microsoft says it'll provide CDs and FTP access for that situation.