Apple, Google, Microsoft will have to pre-install Russian software on its devices

Starting July 1, 2020, it will be prohibited to sell electronics in Russia without pre-installed Russian software. Devices on sale in Russia must have Russian maps, search engines, antiviruses, public services app, messengers and social networks.

Russia’s Federal Anti-Monopoly Service (FAS) offered Apple, Google and Microsoft, US operating system developers, to take charge of pre-installing Russian software on smart phones, tablets, computers and Smart TV. The agency wants the companies to make sure all pre-installed software can be uninstalled, including their own software, if the customer wishes to uninstall it and it does not interfere with the normal operation of a device.

It is unlikely Apple, Google and Microsoft will agree to comply with FAS requirements because operating system owners profit from pre-installation. However, the initiative may have a positive impact on competition.

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