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Woman Sues Microsoft Over Downgrade Payment: Updated

| 9 Mar 2009 22:20
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When Emma Alvarado bought a pre-loaded laptop with Vista, it cost her $59.25 to get a downgrade to XP, which she's hoping to get back in court.

Alvarado's basic complaint is that Microsoft is using their monopoly to force people to pay for downgrades. Her suit, states, "Consumers have encountered numerous problems using the Vista operating system, and these problems have been widely publicized in various media outlets. As a result, many consumers would prefer to purchase a new computer pre-installed with the Windows XP operating system or at least not pre-installed with the Vista operating system."

Microsoft responded by saying, "We still have not been served with the Alvarado lawsuit, so it would be premature to comment on the complaint or the specific allegations." That said, "Microsoft offers downgrade rights as part of some Windows Vista licenses, including Windows Vista Business purchased through the OEM channel."

This new filing comes on the heels of US District Judge Marsha Pechman giving consumers the go-ahead in February 2008 to file a class action lawsuit against Microsoft for providing misleading information about Windows XP computers being able to run Vista, back in December 2006.

Source: The Register

UPDATE:
This Thursday, Emma Alvarado has upgraded her complaint to the Seattle court.

While the original suit still stands, more details have been added on how Microsoft is allegedly screwing the market by charging for downgrades.

Her allegation is based on the idea that people buying Vista Basic need to first upgrade to Vista Business/Professional before they pay to downgrade to XP Professional, so you can only downgrade from the most expensive OS to the most expensive XP OS.

This practice means that Microsoft would "inflate its sales figures for Vista" without people using it. She also cites a customer who had to pay $130 to downgrade, something at odds with Microsoft's claims.

Microsoft's response was to repeat its claim from last time: "Microsoft does not charge or receive any additional royalty if a customer exercises those [downgrade from Vista to XP] rights. Some customers may choose or need to obtain media or installation services from third parties to install the downgrade version."

The plot, and the case, thickens.

Source: The Register

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