"I went too far in my assumptions regarding Microsoft MSFT +0.94%, saying that the one final step they’d take would be to detach the Kinect from the Xbox One so they were able to match Sony's $400 price point. They announced that the Xbox One would no longer need the Kinect to function, and the obvious next step was that they could then make it entirely optional.
"They didn’t. I was wrong, and the Xbox One launched bound to Kinect at $500.
"Now that both consoles are selling well, it’s easy to say that Microsoft made a perfectly fine call. But they are losing. When Sony comes out and says they’ve sold 2.1M units, and Microsoft PR responds by saying “50 million hours have been spent playing our games” instead of revealing their own numbers, that means they’re losing."
Sad, but not surprising at all. The wallybot still can't wrap its feeble software "mind" around the concept of a QUOTATION.
"Windows 8 is going down like a bucket of cold sick - but you're going to have to get used to it. It's not going away. If Microsoft has a future, this is it. Worse still, if you're a pro, you're going to have to support the thing.
"Microsoft had to make this desperate, poorly integrated attempt to foist a Version 1.0 touchscreen UI on us, and do it now, even though nobody wanted it and Windows is primarily a desktop/notebook OS - precisely the type of systems for which Windows 8's touchscreen-oriented Metro Modern UI is suboptimal.
"As for 8.1, it's a minor tweak - there's a Start button again, but no Start menu: the button just opens the Start page. There's an additional tile size; you can go straight to the widgetless "All Apps" view; you can keep your desktop backdrop behind the tiles; you can bypass the Start screen and go straight to the desktop on login. Feature-wise, that is it.
"Why? Because the PC is dying. The next disruptive innovation is here, and it's the fondleslab. They're smaller, lighter, cheaper and simpler - but more to the point, non-techies prefer them. As a result, the decline of the PC market is accelerating – it's pushing 15 per cent a year and notebooks have joined in too.
"In fact, the only category of personal computing devices that are doing well are fondleslabs and Chromebooks.
Must admit I never heard of Florian Mueller, but probably should have. The Wikipedia article makes him sound like a blowhard outsider, more a politician than an engineer, but not one that Microsoft would like having around. Very surprising he's said to be a consultant to Microsoft -- keep your friends close and your enemies closer, eh?
No way to know, but probably a lot. I've seen a number of those ads, several of them during football games IIRC. But still small compared to the spend to push a failed product like Surface. They've got the Surface name conspicuously stenciled on NFL gear on the field, and the camera angles make sure to feature it. That doesn't happen by accident. I can't wait for the Superbowl.
Yeah, about time a Microsoft patent got declared invalid. I'm betting that will happen a lot more times. I'm going to enjoy the spectacle.
Even if nobody else knew Chromebook is a threat to Microsoft, Microsoft itself is announcing it by attacking Chromebook so publicly. And as usual they attack it by a smear campaign, not by trying to improve their own products.
"The U.S. Supreme Court will rule for the first time in decades on patent protection for computer software, taking up a case that has divided the industry and may reverberate through the American economy.
"The justices today agreed to hear arguments on a patented system for limiting the risk that one party to a derivative trade won’t follow through on its obligations. The case splintered a federal appeals court in a ruling that one judge said called hundreds of thousands of patents into question.
Not the only columnist who has noticed.
" "It’s pretty much a brick," says Pawn Stars’ Rick Harrison as he rejects a Samsung Chromebook brought in by an actor playing a customer. Microsoft really doesn’t want you buying this thing.
"But why? Just how big of a threat are Chromebooks, Google’s oft-ridiculed web-only laptops, to Microsoft’s core business?
"In many ways, 2013 has been the year of the Chromebook for Google. From Acer’s $199 C720-2848 to HP’s $279 Chromebook 11, Mountain View has attracted traditional Windows PC makers to build a variety of low-cost laptops in time for the holidays. While Microsoft had largely ignored the threat since the first Chromebook launched some two years ago, it’s been on the attack in recent weeks as part of its ongoing "Scroogled" campaign. Following the Pawn Stars bit, the company has recruited its own "Ben the PC Guy" to hit the streets for comparisons between Windows 8 and a Chromebook."
Rich people are rich for a reason. They approach life differently. The smart approach to health care is to maximize prevention rather than cure. Probably the rich are mostly self-insured, because they can be.
The perception in some quarters is that it won't be be Mulally because of Mulally's preference. One current article comments on Microsoft having suffered a "rejection".
"I'd just taken over as Tesla's PR guy and had been contacted by old friends at Microsoft Game Studios about including the Tesla Roadster in Project Gotham Racing 4. Darryl Siry, my boss, took me into Martin Eberhard's (Tesla's Co-founder/then CEO) office to broach the topic. That's when it went very wrong.
" "So, Martin, you know David has a background in licensing and product placement.”
" "Mmph... that's right"
" "Well, he recently connected with the folks at Microsoft Game Studios about including the Roadster in a game..."
"Martin's face turned ashen as he turned to face me. "Are you crazy!?!" were, I'm fairly certain, the first words out of his mouth.
" “I will not have you doing any business with Microsoft! They are evil!”
I'm not making this up, that's a direct quote. If anyone has any doubt what Microsoft's reputation is, this should make a difference.
"WASHINGTON, Dec 5 (Reuters) - The U.S. House ofRepresentatives on Thursday approved a bill aimed at reining in"patent trolls," companies that buy or license patents fromothers, then extract licensing fees after filing infringementlawsuits viewed by many as frivolous.
"The House passed the bill overwhelmingly by a vote of 325 to91. The Senate is considering a similar measure and could actbefore the end of the year.
"The White House has expressed support for the bill.Sponsored by Robert Goodlatte, Republican of Virginia, ittargets much-criticized patent assertion entities, for behaviorlike sending large numbers of licensing demands to smallbusinesses without determining if they actually use infringingtechnology."
Why do I call them dark horses? Well, taking a hint from public opinion -- no one talks about them much, compared to Mullaly and Elop. And from experience -- they are the ones Ballmer didn't feel threatened enough by, to bother getting rid of them.
If Mullaly is out, that's good news for Mullaly and Ford, bad news for Microsoft. Better hope it's a false rumor.
With Elop at the helm, Microsoft's future looks grim. We've seen him wreck a company, we haven't seen him fix one.
But there are other candidates, still. Dark horses, and like Elop, too redolent of the old Microsoft to do what's needed.
Over half the team, we're told, are ex-Microsoft.
So, what's going on at Microsoft? I've always thought there are lot of talented people at Microsoft. But it appears a lot of them figure the prospects are better elsewhere.
That's it. You're either a new hire, or an old hand under a new alias trying out a new line of guff. In either case I don't need to read any more. As we used to say, *plonk*.