For people like you and me who have the knowledge and ability to select and download a different browser, it's not anti-competitive.
But for the vast majority of consumers who either don't know about alternative browsers and/or don't have the skills to choose an alternative, it is a defacto anti competitive move.
Consumer ignorance is not the fault of MS, but it's disingenuous to take advantage of it - just because it's legal.
"Your" ignorance is not someone else' problem. Ever. The aforementioned squeeze bottle is exactly the same scenario. When Heinz started selling ketchup in squeeze bottles, someone, somewhere, stopped selling their superior squeeze bottles because no one cared to look for them, or pay for them, when they were already getting one for free without the hassle of filling it up in the first place.
Once you decide it means anything that gives you an advantage someone else can't achieve, anti-competitive essentially boils down to everything a company does. If you make a better product, have better advertising, lower costs, anything that makes yours a better product, you're hurting your competition. Stardock is anti-competitive because Start10 is sold with computers, a better product than other options, etc. There is no end to the insanity when you go down this road, and that is why the anti-trust laws were gutted following the insane over-reach against Microsoft.
It hurt their competition to package the browser, this is unavoidably true. It was not an anti-trust issue. Assuming they really did, and I put nothing past them or government so I can't say either way without doing far too much research, punishing companies that didn't only sell their software was an anti-trust violation. That is where things change from simply being better, to coercing other companies into exclusive arrangements. You can exploit market dominance, if only temporarily, to kill superior competitors by wiping out their outlets. Anyone that doesn't go along becomes uncompetitive and goes under, and there lies the immoral, and currently illegal, trust. An agreement between two or more companies to exclude another from the market.
What's so damned despicable about this debacle is MS citing 'security concerns' with previous OSes. Several tech writers have denounced this move as scare tactics and quite dishonest. The truth is, MS wants everybody using Win 10, and will stop at nothing to make that happen. Well I have some bad news for MS, I'm switching to a Linux OS when support for Win 8.1 is taken off the table.
This is talk, entirely. Full support for Windows 7 is over, as scheduled. They are no longer supporting new hardware, just as they did with every previous iteration, and are only doing security updates for the duration of extended support, just as they did with every previous iteration.
When Microsoft released XP with SP2, they included countless drivers for hardware that came out post release, their automatic updates included these optional drivers as well. Having the SP2 disk made the typical installation much easier because many devices simply wouldn't work until you got your disk out or went online to fix them. It did not mean the drivers didn't exist, you simply had to go to those third parties to get them. Anyone that releases major hardware in the next several years, and doesn't release a Windows 7 driver, is committing suicide. The only thing happening is what always has, Microsoft wont be going through them, verifying their stability, and adding them to the update packages.