Honest question to those who think Apple is in the wrong here: Would it make a difference if the checkbox for Safari were off by default instead?
What I haven't seen mentioned in the sources I have read is how easy it is to ignore Safari 3.1:
That said, I think Apple has to more clearly label the two groups of software in that screenshot, upgrades and new installs. I don't care at all that the application itself is called Software Update, Windows Update (now Microsoft Update) pushes new software on users, Silverlight is the latest example. But I have to think that this has become a controversy simply because it is Apple. By them doing this, they will start to eat into Windows browser market share, even a little bit, and clearly the existing minority but significant Windows browser maker doesn't like that. These apps are free to end users, but that search revenue sure adds up fast. As Gruber correctly points out, during installs or upgrades, on Windows anything goes. You want to install Windows Live Messenger, you get a mess of IE toolbars and other products. Depending on how you get Firefox, get a bundled Google Toolbar. This is all par for the course on Windows.