Microsoft and the Finnish Consumer Authority reached an agreement following an investigation started in mid-2016 due to reported forced upgrades on Windows computers.
The software giant agreed to no longer install applications without consent on computers in Finland and to also maintain the original behavior of options that are displayed on the screen.
News agency Xinhua reports that as part of the agreement, Microsoft must provide all the necessary information to users whenever an upgrade of install is required, and to also wait for their consent before starting the actual process.
“The entrepreneur cannot presume that the consumer gets information about a product on his own or would seek information via complex internet links,” the consumer watchdog was quoted as saying.
The Get Windows 10 app saga
Microsoft rolled out Windows 10 in July 2015, offering the operating system free of charge to Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 users who performed the upgrade before July 2016. To enhance the transition process, Microsoft released an app called “Get Windows 10” that was shipped via Windows Update to all systems eligible for the upgrade.
While the app was supposed to begin the upgrade process, it automatically downloaded the necessary files in the background and prompted users regularly to start the installation of Windows 10. Microsoft has also been accused of changing the behavior of the X button in the top right corner from close to OK, which triggered the Windows 10 upgrade when users actually wanted to cancel the process.
The Finnish consumer watchdog claims the “Get Windows 10” app was nothing more than a direct marketing tool and didn’t require users’ consent to install and download Windows 10 upgrade files, according to the cited source.
Microsoft hasn’t released an official statement on its agreement with the Finish consumer organization, but the company has reportedly promised to play nice in the future whenever local customers are involved.