Alphabet's Google Cloud has accused Microsoft of anti-competitive cloud computing practices and slammed upcoming deals with several European cloud vendors, claiming that they do not address broader concerns about Microsoft's licencing terms.
Google Cloud Vice President Amit Zavery told Reuters that the company had raised the problem with antitrust agencies and urged European Union antitrust regulators to take a deeper look in its first public comments on Microsoft and its European deals.
In response, Microsoft cited a blog post from May of last year in which its president Brad Smith stated that the company “has a healthy number two position when it comes to cloud services, with just over 20 per cent market share of global cloud services revenues.”
“We are committed to the success of the European Cloud Community,” a Microsoft spokesperson told Reuters on Thursday.
In the fast-growing, multibillion-dollar cloud computing industry, where Google trails market leaders Amazon and Microsoft, the two American tech titans are fiercely competitive.
Because of the dominance of a few players and its increasingly critical role as more companies move their services to the cloud, the sector has recently attracted increased regulatory scrutiny, including in the United States and the United Kingdom.
A person with direct knowledge of the issue told Reuters this week that Microsoft has offered to alter its cloud computing practices in exchange for a few smaller competitors suspending their antitrust complaints.
The decision will put an end to an EU investigation.
“In the cloud, Microsoft has a very anti-competitive posture. They're leveraging a lot of their dominance in the on-premise business, as well as Office 365 and Windows, to tie Azure and the rest of the cloud services together and make it difficult for customers to have a choice,” Zavery said late Wednesday in an interview.
“When we talk to many of our customers,” he said. “They find that many of these bundling practices, as well as the way they create pricing and licencing restrictions, make it difficult for them to choose other providers,” he added.