On March 26, Microsoft said it has sold in excess of 20 million licenses in the first month of Vista's general availability, which it said was double the pace of its initial XP sales. So what was that whole "Steve Ballmer warns Wall Street away from too-rosy Vista predictions" all about?
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 30 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).
Microsoft made available for download on March 26 a public beta version of Office Communications Server (OCS) 2007, as company officials indicated they planned to do earlier this month.
With the growing number of offline-capable versions of office suites/browsers tools, what will be Microsoft's retort? Will Microsoft bow to pressure and lob a Web-ified version of Office into the crowd?
Whatever the reasons behind the formation of the Microsoft-Novell technology partnership announced last year, it's helping Novell SuSE Linux gain at Red Hat's expense, according to a research study due out next month from the Yankee Group. Meanwhile, "about 12 percent of Windows users surveyed by Yankee who had "defected" to Linux are now reversing their decisions and coming back to the Microsoft fold," Yankee found.
How much does Vista compatibility matter to Apple and current/future Apple buyers? With a number of existing Microsoft customers holding off from upgrading to Vista for a variety of reasons, does Vista compatibility really merit Apple delaying a new product release by several months?
For the past couple of years, Microsoft has been fixated on beating IBM Lotus Notes/Domino in the e-mail server market. But according to a Yankee Group report that will be published next month, the real threat to Microsoft Exchange isn't IBM -- it's Linux- and open-source-based e-mail servers.
Microsoft is going to try to resuscitate its Dynamic Systems Initiative (DSI) in the coming weeks/months, starting with the March 22 announcement that Microsoft and a handful of systems-management partners -- and competitors -- are submitting the XML-based Service Modeling Language (SML) to the W3C for standardization.
It always felt wrong to me to call the fledgling Soapbox on MSN Video a "YouTube killer." As of March 22 -- with NBC, News Corp., MSN, Yahoo, AOL and MySpace all aligning to try to take on Google's YouRube -- it feels a tad better to refer to Soapbox and YouTube in the same breath.
To Microsoft -- for the time being at least -- hosting is all about the channel. Microsoft's Hosting business, part of its Communications Sector group, is conducted via service providers. But that situation is poised to change -- and, I'd bet sooner rather than later.
One by-product of the March 21 Microsoft announcement of the creation of a new Search and Ad Platform group got relatively little play. As a result of the latest reorg, Live Search development is no longer under Senior Vice President Steven Sinofsky. Instead, Live Search is now joined at the hip with Microsoft adCenter.