Rather than play either note I'd like to focus on the business model and the opportunities it offers open source.
What we're looking at here is bundled SaaS. SaaS for the masses.
Security is at the heart of this announcement. This is aimed far more at McAfee and Symantec than at Open Office. Microsoft is bundling an anti-viral with office productivity at roughly the price of the first.
Second, re-sellers. Microsoft chose its Worldwide Partner Conference in Houston as the venue for this. It had good reason. Microsoft is depending on its vast re-seller network to make Equipt a money-spinner.
But what can we learn from this? A bundle which includes security as well as productivity, and a global network of re-sellers.
This could be a great opportunity for open source.
Imagine, if you will, Open Office partnering with one of the security vendors being bypassed through this announcement. Trend Micro, McAfee, Symantec, CheckPoint, even Avast! There are many vendors directly threatened with death anxious to deal.
Now, the third partner. Google? Well, any cloud will do. How about Yahoo? Or Amazon? Or Sun?
See how easy this bundle is to pull off? With open source tools? You can have a SaaS system spinning big bucks in consumer open source within a few months.
Now imagine what Open Office could do with that money? Even a taste of, say, $50/year would, multiplied millions of times, enable an immense effort in documentation and development, taking it well past Microsoft Office in capabilities.
You can say Microsoft has found a way to crush open source. Or you can say open source has been shown a business model it can use to crack the mass market and gain a sustainable revenue base.
I prefer thinking the latter.