Eric Yuan, the CEO of Zoom, has suggested that the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) should consider taking action similar to the EU’s decision to force Microsoft to unbundle Teams from Office in Europe, saying “(y)ou should ask this question to the FTC as well.”
Microsoft recently announced that it will be unbundling Teams from its Microsoft 365 and Office 365 suites in the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland. This change is set to take effect on October 1, 2023. The decision comes after the European Commission formally investigated Microsoft’s bundling of Teams with its productivity suites. The Commission is concerned that Microsoft’s bundling could create an unfair advantage over competitors.
This suggestion by Eric Yuan is part of a broader discussion around the bundling of software products and potential antitrust concerns. It comes after Zoom revealed updates to its AI-powered assistant Zoom IQ, which is now rebranded as the AI Companion.
Microsoft’s bundling practices, including integrating Teams into Office and promoting its products within Windows 11, have raised questions about competition in the tech industry. Yuan’s comment reignites the debate over whether bundling stifles competition. Microsoft’s success with Teams, used by around 300 million daily, raises questions about its bundling practices.
It’s important to note that antitrust investigations and actions can have significant implications for tech companies and their business practices, potentially leading to changes in how they bundle and promote their products. The outcome of any such investigation by the FTC would depend on a thorough examination of the specific practices and their impact on the market.