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Gates: MS won't buy content companies

At the Davos economic summit, Bill Gates takes a shot at Linux and hints at Microsoft's acquisition strategy
Written by ZDNet UK, Contributor

Microsoft isn't likely to acquire part or all of any "pure" content company within the next few years, Chairman and chief software architect Bill Gates said Sunday.

"I don't see Microsoft owning 50 percent or 100 percent in businesses that are primarily driven by pure content activities," Gates told a group of reporters at the World Economic Forum.

Though Microsoft wouldn't be looking for such acquisitions, Gates said, he could see continued cooperation agreements and tie-ups with other kinds of companies.

Commenting on the rise of Linux, a computer operating system that competes with Microsoft's Windows products, he said: "We certainly have Linux and various forms of Linux as a significant competitor."

But he added that Linux is "in essence Unix from 20 years ago," and expressed confidence that Microsoft's new Windows 2000 software will be successful in fending off competition. Shipping of the software will begin February 17.

Unix is the computer operating software on which Linux is based.

Gates declined to comment specifically on antitrust proceedings against Microsoft taking place in Washington. However, he said, "There's a good mediation process going on."

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