Bloor Research on Microsoft: ‘There are definitely some dents in the Death Star’

“A few years ago, few analysts would have predicted that Microsoft might share the key computer code that powers its dominant Office productivity software with dozens of foreign governments and international agencies. Yet in late September, the industry barely blinked when the world’s largest software outfit announced it would open the code to one of its crown jewels. Ostensibly, Gates & Co. coughed up its code to keep customers happy and maintain a lucrative line of business with governmental organizations. A host of alternatives from StarOffice, OpenOffice, and other pretenders can do much of what Microsoft Office now does, and at a fraction of the price,” Alex Salkever reports for BusinessWeek.

“The move to defend Office is one more sign that Microsoft is no longer an unstoppable force. ‘It was going to be the company that had the operating system for everything, and they were going to win the game. Today when you ask people about this, they are not sure,’ says Jim Mackey, director of development at the Woodside Institute and a research who studies the performance of very large companies,” Salkever reports.

“Microsoft declined to comment for this story. But many analysts now see the Colossus of Redmond losing influence in the IT universe. No doubt, some of that perception among competitors — and their new sense of courage — comes from witnessing the bloody, multiyear battle waged in the 1990s against Microsoft by the Justice Dept. for alleged antitrust violations. Also important: broad structural changes in the IT sector that play against Redmond,” Salkever reports. “Computing power is shifting away from the desktop, where Microsoft still dominates. Business customers more and more treat software as a commodity and a service. The inability of Microsoft’s own massive research efforts to divine the next big thing in IT also has left Redmond in no better position to capture the future than small startups or smaller competitors. ‘You look at the earnings numbers and they are not doing badly,’ says Merrill Lynch software analyst Jason Maynard. ‘But competitors and customers don’t feel the same threat. There are definitely some dents in the Death Star.'”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Someday the world will look back upon the years where Microsoft dominated the operating system and business markets as computing’s dark ages. Which brings us to our MacDailyNews related article, “Bloor research: ‘Apple is out-innovating the competition in a remorseless way’” from September 10, 2004, in which analyst Robin Bloor talks about “The Continuing Renaissance of Apple.”


  1. “I just like to refer to the writers of sub-standard code (in Redmond) as…’The Evil Empire'”

    Fun story: Several years ago at WWDC–I wish I remember what session it was–during a Q&A session, people get up and give their name and company before asking their question (eg, “Peter Smith, Altamira Group”). I think it might have been 1999 or 2000, as I think it might have been the year that they gave away a PowerBook every hour and the first winner was some guy from Microsoft.

    Anyway, this guy from Microsoft gets up to ask his question and identifies himself as “Bob Smith, Evil Empire” (Name changed)

    There were some boos and hisses, but most people just laughed.

  2. Melinda to Bill the morning after their wedding:

    “Now I know why you call it Microsoft.”

    I know, I know, but I couldn’t help myself. ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”wink” style=”border:0;” />

  3. Peter & Andy C. –

    MonkeySwipe (how DO they get their software ideas?)
    MonkeyStall (WHEN will that be released?)
    or MonkeyShite

    Monkey, to me, represents the Neanderthal-aged products they are still pushing. The only innovations this group makes are nifty, profitable schemes to milk the most out of their user base while doing the smallest amount of actual software development.

    Until now, the monkey has played the “See no evil” game. There must be some serious worrying going on for MondoShite to be opening up the code.

  4. Peter, Peter, Peter.
    The ONLY one that realy works (and I’ll tell you why) is:
    The reason it works is because the reader inserts his own two letters. So if you see a dirty word…

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.