Micrososft's ad-supported Works could be a hit

Micrososft's ad-supported Works could be a hit

Summary: So, Microsoft has announced that ad-supported copies of the Works suite will be made available within the next few months. While I'm no fan of having applications stuffed full of ads running on my PC, this could be a hit.

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TOPICS: Microsoft, Google, PCs
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So, Microsoft has announced that ad-supported copies of the Works suite will be made available within the next few months.  While I'm no fan of having applications stuffed full of ads running on my PC, this could be a hit.

So, why do I think that an ad-supported version of Works could be a big hit when there's already plenty of free word processing and spreadsheet packages available (Open Office, Zoho, Google Docs, etc)?  Two reasons.  First off, Microsoft be pushing for OEMs to bundle this application onto new PCs (especially those aimed at the lower end of the consumer market), and that's likely to give it a lot of traction.  Second reason is that Works is a commercial package worth about $39, so people will see getting a free version as getting something for nothing.  Never underestimate people's desire to get something for nothing.

One thing I'm interested in finding out is how this product will be supported - my guess is that customers will get what they pay for and have access to very limited help if things go wrong.

Overall, while I'm pretty sure that the ad-supported Works suite will be useful to some home users, especially if new systems come bundled with it, I'm also confident that the hype will evaporate pretty quickly.

Thoughts?

Topics: Microsoft, Google, PCs

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5 comments
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  • Oh no!!

    Now I'm going to have even more people sending me documents in .wps format.

    Just what I need!!! Not.
    bportlock
    • If MS does not go with OOXML

      it won't be that big of a hit. If they do it will be, but then the file format won't be an issue.
      Michael Kelly
  • If MS does go with OOXML

    as Work's native file format, then start buying MS stock again, because it will be huge. Most people would even gladly pay the $40 for the non-ad version.

    But of course there's no word out on that yet, so don't hold your breath yet.
    Michael Kelly
  • Preloaded Works already a reality...

    Adrian, If you look at the retail PC market some of the top brands already pre-load MS Works on their systems. A good example are the HP/Compaq's, Toshiba's, Dell's and I believe Gateways to name a few. Most people either buy Microsoft Office (home/student edition around 149.99 installs on up to 3 PC's), or download OpenOffice (free and unlimited installs).<br><br>I work retail in computer sales etc... and I think I've been asked for Works maybe once in two or three months.<br><br>Ad based Works will likely be a dud unless vendors stop pre-installing the ad free version. The thought of spyware slipping in via the ad's would be enough for me to suggest people not use it.
    devlin_X
  • On the other hand

    Broken legs and arms are quite popular on
    ski slopes.
    Much of the cost for casts could be defrayed
    by collecting fees from doctors and
    hospitals for advertising space on the
    casts. Say $150 for a 2X4 inch space? Or
    just auction off the spaces to the highest
    bidder?
    Ole Man