In an interview this week with Knowledge@Wharton, however, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer finally admits on the record that the Zune DRM system is where Microsoft's putting its future eggs.
All About Microsoft
Microsoft watcher Mary Jo Foley's blog covers the products, people and strategies that make Microsoft tick.
Mary Jo Foley
Mary Jo has covered the tech industry for more than 25 years for a variety of publications and Web sites, and is a frequent guest on radio, TV and podcasts, speaking about all things Microsoft-related. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008).
Can Microsoft parlay its software-development experience into superior tools for those willing to give its adCenter platform a whirl? The Softies are attempting to send that message with some of Microsoft's latest Live-centric announcements and unveilings.
Microsoft has hired Donald Ferguson, the so-called "father of WebSphere," to work in Microsoft's Office of the Chief Technology Officer (CTO) with Ray Ozzie, as reported by the .Net Developers Journal. But what, exactly, will Ferguson do in his new role as technical fellow in the "Platforms and Strategy" area?
Even though the retail launch of Windows Vista just a couple of weeks away, Microsoft is still continuing to fine-tune its licensing and pricing details. Sources said that Microsoft will announce some time over the next few days that the company will allow Vista Ultimate customers to purchase two additional copies of Vista Home Premium for somewhere between $50 to $99 a piece.
A quiet change Microsoft has made in the rendering engine used by Outlook 2007 is beginning to sink in among individuals who have gotten accustomed to having the Internet Explorer (IE) engine render HTML e-mail messages. And the reaction of many is one of anger and disbelief.
I'm sure I'll be adding more to this as the year rolls along, but here's my list of must-attend Microsoft events.
Microsoft confirmed on its Channel 9 Web site that there are, indeed, early builds of IE 8.0 circulating inside the company.
Will Apple release a version of its Safari browser for Windows? The Mozilla Foundation seems to believe such a move is a distinct possibility.
Microsoft and the Mozilla Foundation are pushing ahead with their respective next versions of their Web browsers. Their methods are different, but many of their priorities are -- at least in theory -- quite similar.
Things are about to get even more murky on the Live branding front. At this week's CES, Microsoft showed off some demonstrations of Live Anywhere. But officials didn't use that terminology. Instead, Live Anywhere is now known as "Live." Plain old Live.