AMD: Microsoft not a monopoly, Intel is

Posted on Sunday, Jun 24 2007 @ 23:50 CEST by Thomas De Maesschalck
In a keynote to the American Antitrust Institute in Washington D.C., AMD CEO Hector Ruiz claimed (somewhat camouflaged) that Intel has a monopoly, while others like Google and Microsoft don't.
"I do not need my fortune teller hat to tell you one truth about which I am absolutely certain," Ruiz told attendees, "There is no proper or defensible place for illegal monopolies in the 21st century global marketplace...My purpose is not to argue for competitive advantage - we know how to compete. My purpose is to lay out the facts so that law and economics can do their job to protect consumers."

When a certain unnamed monopolist is permitted to do business as it wishes, Ruiz explained, its competitors may be more efficient and more innovative, though it cannot form partnerships and engage in cooperation with other players in the market. "All of that yields the one outcome antitrust law is designed to prevent," he continued, "consumers suffering at the hands of a monopoly by being forced to pay higher prices for what are all-too-often inferior products."

Evidence of that inferiority, he stated, comes from the fact that desktop computers have not fundamentally changed in the last decade-and-a-half, except perhaps for the introduction of flatter monitors and wireless connectivity.

When new laws brought an end to monopolies such as Standard Oil and the original AT&T, Ruiz' speech went on, a multitude of players were enabled to enter those markets, creating not just more competition but more cooperation and innovation. New players could enter markets and compete on a level field.

For instance, he cited, "Google, Microsoft, and computer manufacturers like HP and Dell all owe their existence to the simple fact that competition replaced forced exclusivity and allowed a variety of players to compete and succeed."

Only after Ruiz mentioned those four names did he invoke the dreaded "I" word.
Ruiz also claimed that Intel is holding the IT industry hostage and that this leads to less choice and innovation, and higher prices. More info at BetaNews.

About the Author

Thomas De Maesschalck

Thomas has been messing with computer since early childhood and firmly believes the Internet is the best thing since sliced bread. Enjoys playing with new tech, is fascinated by science, and passionate about financial markets. When not behind a computer, he can be found with running shoes on or lifting heavy weights in the weight room.

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