Microsoft executives acknowledge Apple’s ‘iPod Halo Effect’

“Microsoft’s chief executive, Steven A. Ballmer, made a concerted effort [yesterday] to persuade Wall Street analysts that the world’s largest software publisher will again become a growth stock,” John Markoff reports for The New York Times. “Microsoft’s top executives have become increasingly frustrated over the last five years as the company’s stock first declined and then remained flat while some of its competitors’ shares have soared. Several analysts said today that Microsoft would be hard-pressed to make the case for growth prospects until it established a positive market reception for new versions of its Windows and Office programs, due in the second half of next year.”

“On Wednesday, the company shipped the first public test copies of the next version of the Windows operating system, now known as Windows Vista, to outside software developers. The program, which is roughly three years late to market, by some estimates, will go through two long test programs before being commercially available in the second half of 2006,” Markoff reports. “Today, Microsoft gave an extended demonstration of the program to the financial analysts, pointing to advantages like a unified version for corporate users – rather than multiple versions to address various needs within a company – simplifying the job of corporate information technology managers.”

Markoff reports, “Many features shown today are ones already introduced in Apple Computer’s OS X Tiger operating system. During today’s briefing, Microsoft executives acknowledged that the popularity of Apple Computer’s iPod music player had indirectly helped sales of Macintosh computers. ‘The halo effect enabled them to go after PC users and sell them Apple products,’ said Will Poole, the Microsoft executive in charge of desktop operating system products.”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: The halo effect enabled Apple to go after PC users and sell them Macs, Will. Come on now, you can say it: Mac-in-tosh. Try “podcasting,” too, while you’re at it. Microsoft’s stock chart looks like a Zamboni drove over it. We’re not doctors, but to us that chart says one thing: flatline. It’s smoother and flatter than even Ballmer’s head. Compare it to Apple’s over the last three years here; it’s Everest vs. the parking lot. Monkey Boy Ballmer dances while Redmond burns.

[Updated article layout 7/29, 9:34am EDT]

Related iPodDailyNews articles:
Microsoft employees squeamish about ‘podcast’ term, try using ‘blogcast’ instead – July 11, 2005
Related MacDailyNews articles:
Dvorak: Mac OS X is already better than Windows, Vista may be end of line for Microsoft’s dominance – July 26, 2005
Microsoft’s Windows ‘Vista’ too little, too late; could be rough times ahead for Redmond – July 28, 2005
Microsoft’s Windows ‘Vista’ promises similar features to Apple’s already-shipping Mac OS X – July 23, 2005
Enderle: ‘iPod Halo Effect is just a myth, same thing as having Paris Hilton visit Apple stores’ – May 02, 2005
Microsoft dismisses threat of Apple’s ‘iPod Halo Effect’ – April 04, 2005
Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer: ‘We love to be first’ – January 25, 2005


  1. That picture always cracks me up. Thanks MDN, you guys always find a way to make me laugh. “Steven A. Ballmer, made a concerted effort today to persuade Wall Street analysts that the world’s largest software publisher will again become a growth stock” also helps keep the laughter flowing.

  2. Only Bill Gates could have Steve Ballmer as a friend, yet alone, CEO of a major company. I can’t imagine why Microsoft’s stock is flat-lined, which of course, means dead…

  3. Interesting little ritual between Balmer and the anals.

    Does someone really need an anal to tell them wants wrong with MSFT?

    ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”raspberry” style=”border:0;” />

  4. That pic really is a hoot. But a quick word of warning…

    Many people own M$ stock, including anals. Stock-picking types want their portfolios to grow. As such, stock picking types manipulate news and markets to their advantage. Because of this, be cautious about anals linguis. Sorry, couldn’t resist.

    Just as ‘beleagured’ AAPL has skyrocketed, so might M$ when Vista doesn’t suck as bad as expected. Keep expectations low and you’re always blown away. Stock price is not about real value, but traded and perceived value. If the world wants M$ to succeed, M$ will succeed. That will then make it fun while Apple leaps from the shadows…

  5. Is there a larger hihger res. version of that photo available? it would make a great poster here at work where everything except a couple of laptops is Dell and IBM with Windows…. and the IS staff love it.

  6. ‘The halo effect enabled them to go after PC users and sell them Apple products,’ said Will Poole

    The Xserve boom.. no.. wait… he’s talking about iPod Socks.. nono.. wait… Final Cut Pro..

    ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”wink” style=”border:0;” />

    Anything but the Mac, right?

  7. Too little too late. Steve came back as the man with the plan. It will be very fun to watch him implement the next moves. In fact, with the Intel move, he has pretty much told them his next move. But there isn’t anything they can do about it.

  8. hey! where’s NMFY? how could he miss an opportunity like this to remind us of the superiority of Windows? ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”rolleyes” style=”border:0;” />

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