A nice bonus for Microsoft, even if it wasn't a primary part of the original Microsoft/Yahoo! plan...
The bigger story is that Google and Microsoft are warring over which one will be the world's dominant software company. Yahoo's not a contender, it's materiel.
It's in that war that Ballmer can claim a small but important victory Tuesday, when Google will be the focus of a hearing before the Senate subcommittee on antitrust, competition policy and consumer rights.
The same committee in 1998 raked a cocksure Microsoft over the coals.
Now the senators are concerned about Google providing ad services to Yahoo, and what that consolidation of market share means to the public and Internet advertising.
Separately, the U.S. Department of Justice has started a formal investigation of the May partnership Google and Yahoo formed to thwart Microsoft's takeover attempt, The Washington Post reported.
Was Ballmer's master plan to hang the antitrust albatross on Google?