Opera says demand up as Microsoft opens EU market

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The Independent Tech

Opera Software said on Wednesday it had seen a surge in downloads of its browser after Microsoft started to give Europeans the option of choosing smaller rivals' browsers.

"Since the browser choice screen rollout, Opera downloads have more than tripled in major European countries, such as Belgium, France, Spain, Poland and the UK," said Rolf Assev, Opera's chief strategy officer.

On December 16 European Union regulators accepted Microsoft's pledge to give European consumers better access to rival Internet browsers in Windows, ending a long antitrust dispute with the US software maker.

Since the start of this week Microsoft has allowed users to select from among 12 browsers including its own Internet Explorer, Mozilla's Firefox, Apple Inc's Safari and Google Inc's Chrome on more than 100 million old and new PCs.