Zoom raises antitrust concerns over Microsoft’s Teams


Zoom Video Communications has voiced its worries about Microsoft’s alleged anti-competitive practices to regulators from various countries. The video conferencing platform has accused Microsoft of giving unfair advantage to its Teams app through price bundling and product design.

Zoom meets with regulators from US and EU

According to Bloomberg News, Zoom has met with regulators from the United States, European Union and other jurisdictions to outline its concerns about Microsoft’s behavior over the past year. Zoom has spoken with the U.S. Federal Trade Commission, as well as competition enforcers from the EU, UK and Germany.

Zoom raises antitrust concerns over Microsoft’s Teams
Zoom raises antitrust concerns over Microsoft’s Teams

Zoom has expressed its concerns about the way Microsoft gives preference to its Teams videoconferencing software through price bundling and product design. Zoom CEO Eric Yuan said at a conference on Tuesday that “if you have unfair competition, you may not win”.

Microsoft faces antitrust probes in Europe

Microsoft has been under scrutiny from the EU’s competition watchdog, which is examining whether tying Teams to business products Microsoft 365 and Office 365 breached antitrust rules. The EU probe followed a complaint that Salesforce Inc.’s messaging platform Slack made three years ago.

Last week, Microsoft, the world’s largest software maker, said it would unbundle Teams in Europe beginning Oct. 12. The move was seen as an attempt to stave off a possible EU antitrust fine.

Germany and UK also investigate Microsoft’s cloud services

Germany’s Federal Cartel Office opened a probe into Microsoft in March using new powers that let the authority ban certain practices that hamper competition online. The German investigation is looking into Microsoft’s bundling of OneDrive and Teams with the company’s other productivity software, among other issues.

US and UK authorities have started initial inquiries into cloud services, an area in which Microsoft’s Azure is a major player. The UK’s digital regulator said in April that some practices by Microsoft, as well as cloud rivals Amazon.com Inc. and Alphabet Inc., might limit innovation.

Zoom faces competition from other video conferencing apps

Zoom has been one of the beneficiaries of the pandemic-induced shift to remote work and online learning. The company’s revenue surged 326% in 2020 and its stock price soared more than 400%.

However, Zoom also faces competition from other video conferencing apps such as Cisco Webex, Google Meet and Facebook Messenger Rooms. Microsoft’s Teams has been one of the main challengers to Zoom, as it offers video calls, chat and collaboration features in one app.

Zoom has been trying to differentiate itself from its rivals by adding new features and expanding its offerings. The company recently launched Zoom Events, a platform for hosting virtual events and conferences. Zoom also acquired cloud contact center provider Five9 for $14.7 billion in July to enter the $24 billion market for customer service software.


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