Microsoft backs Australia's proposed media laws, eyes expansion

Android Auto will remain if Google leaves

The software giant's bold stance came after Microsoft chief executive Satya Nadella spoke with Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Communications Minister Paul Fletcher last week, and followed a threat from Google to withdraw its search engine from Australia to evade laws that would make it pay local media outlets for the news it used on its platform.

That said, Smith stressed Microsoft would still be willing to live by the proposed rules if the government designates the company as coming under the jurisdiction of the rules, should they be passed into law. The ACCC says that the code aims to "address bargaining power imbalances between Australian news media businesses and digital platforms, specifically Google and Facebook".

Facebook and Google have both threatened to block key services in Australia if the rules, now before parliament, become law in their current form.

Microsoft shows its full support to Australia where the government announced the ambitious plans to make Google pay for news.

Microsoft in its statement said it will offer small firms a chance to transfer advertising business to Bing with no costs and that it would invest further in the product to ensure it is competitive.

Legislation introducing a bargaining code between Facebook and Google and Australian media companies which would require final offer arbitration to determine revenue-sharing deals between the two sides is now the subject of a Senate inquiry and is likely to be debated in Parliament later this month.

On Feb. 3, Microsoft has thrown its support behind the Australian Federal Government's efforts to pass a proposed media bargaining code.

While other tech companies sometimes threaten to leave Australia, Microsoft will never pose a threat.

"Everyone in this country now should have a right to be able to search the internet, own their own data rather than hand it over to a corporation or to the government, and know that what they're finding on the internet isn't what Google wants them to see, but what is actually there".

Apple Announces macOS Big Sur Update, Fixes Bluetooth and External Display Issues
There will also be a new Web Speech API for developers so that they can incorporate speech recognition into their web pages. The update also addresses the problem that might cause Apple ProRAW photo edits in the Photos app to remain unsaved.

The tech giant also took a swipe at Google for its threat to leave Australia in response to the code.

"But they're interested in expanding that, they're interested in developing the presence of Bing here".

"We're not panicking", Strong said.

Meanwhile, Microsoft released a statement about the possibility of providing an online search service to Australia through its Bing platform.

"The internet is now part of everyday life, it's an essential service".

At the very least, the company seems to be positioning itself to be made out as the default alternative if people in Australia and, most importantly, businesses shift their search loyalty away from Google.

This would include investigating how much a publicly owned search engine, the best practice privacy provisions that could be put in place.

"Like the ABC, a public search engine should be independent of the government of the day and be there to provide access to information for all Australians".

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