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Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Microsoft Set for WW III

.. Or is it IV, V or VI?

The battlefield is scattered with the partial remains of Lotus, WordPerfect, IBM (Software), Netscape, Sun, and others who tried to slay Microsoft, so Google doesn't stand a chance right?

The NY Times talks up the big battle between GOOG vs MS, but the field of competition is different.

Microsoft tussled with the above directly on mutual turf that was pretty clearly defined (browsers, spreadsheets, server software, etc.). But Google's war is more of a guerilla effort, instead of directly challenging MS (they don't really want selling billions worth of software to be their forte), Google has changed the nature of the war (ad-supported software versus conventional sales, Internet-centric versus desktop centric) and MS has already had to adjust.

The good news for Google is that they have lots of friends (Firefox and the rest of the open sourcers) who will stage their own skirmishes and help to distract Microsoft.

In the end, Microsoft and Google will both be powerhouses, but by fighting each other, they will encourage competition and lower prices in software and advertsing. Each will be weaker than they are now, which will enable lots of third-party players to rise up. Game on!

By John Gartner at 01:32 PM | Comments (0)

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