Which part of Office 14 will be ad-supported? Web apps
Some company watchers are scratching their heads over a Microsoft exec's claim that part of Office 14 will be ad-supported. Psst. Hey guys... Microsoft told us last fall: The consumer versions of Office 14 Web apps will be ad-funded.
Psst. Hey guys... Microsoft told us last fall: The consumer versions of Office 14 Web apps will be ad-funded.
The latest pronouncement about Microsoft's Business Division's ad-funded intentions came on March 3 during the Morgan Stanley Technology Conference, where Division President Stephen Elop keynoted. Silicon Alley Insider reported Elop's comments on the Office team's plans for "ad-supported revenue streams."
"Microsoft is saying it will deliver Office Web applications 'through Office Live.' There will be both ad-funded and paid-subscription versions of these Web apps. For business users, Office Web applications will be sold as a hosted subscription service and through volume-licensing agreements. For consumers, Office Web Applications will be ad-funded and free."
Silicon Alley Insider also quoted Elop as saying the ad-funded Office 14 components were an anti-piracy initiative. I'm not so sure those two ideas are as tightly related as the Insiders seem to think.
During presentations over the past couple of weeks, the idea that pirated Microsoft software is a bigger threat to Microsoft than offerings from its competitors has been a recurrent one.
CEO Steve Ballmer told Wall Street analysts in late February that pirated versions of Office were taking far more of a bite out of Office than Google Apps, Open Office or any of the other Office competitors on the market. He showed this chart, generated from Microsoft internal data, as proof:
Microsoft has been testing gingerly the ad-funded waters for the past year-plus. The company fielded a pilot of ad-funded Microsoft Works starting in 2007. But so far, most of the Business Division offerings -- whether software, services, or a combo of both, have been paid/subscription-based.