Gates: ‘People tend to get overfocused on one of our competitors’

“Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates took the wraps off its next-generation operating system known as Windows Vista on Wednesday, displaying features aimed at positioning the software giant as the entertainment hub for a future of digitally connected homes,” Daisuke Wakabayashi reports for Reuters. “The much anticipated upgrade to Microsoft’s flagship operating system displayed a new interface with 3-D scrolling between different windows, which can appear translucent to allow users to see the information beneath.”

“Some of the elements of Vista featured in Gates’ speech took aim at Microsoft’s various competitors, such as Google Inc. and Apple Computer Inc.,” Wakabayashi reports. “Microsoft unveiled a search function within Vista that cuts across the content within the PC and its network, aimed at not conceding search on the desktop or the Internet to Google. ‘People tend to get overfocused on one of our competitors. We’ve always seen that,’ said Gates. ‘The biggest company in the computer industry by far is IBM. They have the four times the employees that I have, way more revenues than I have. IBM has always been our biggest competitor. The press just doesn’t like to write about IBM.'”

“Redmond, Washington-based Microsoft also unveiled MTV Network’s Urge Music Service, which will be built into Vista’s new Windows Media Center and offer users instant access to 2 million songs and videos in MTV’s library,” Wakabayashi reports. “In a show of pizzazz usually reserved for Apple, Gates was joined on stage by pop idol Justin Timberlake to introduce the new service. The enormous popularity of Apple’s iPod portable music player has made the accompanying iTunes music and video service the defining entertainment media delivery service.”

Full article here.
If Gates was referring to Apple with his “people tend to get overfocused on one of our competitors” comment, the reason is because most people are interested in the future, not in seeing things called “innovations” that Mac users have had for half a decade or more. Photo organization app with red eye removal? Translucent windows? Some rudimentary Exposé feature? Justin Effing Timberlake?! Puleeze, will the rest of the world actually fall for Gates’ and Microsoft’s B.S. again? What would the world’s PC users have to be excited about exactly, that they can finally do it, if they buy a new computer to run Vista? What’ll stop them from buying a Mac instead (especially if Intel-based Macs can run their Windows software at acceptable speed)? Their iPods will thank them for it, that’s for sure; so will their sanity. This isn’t 1995, many people can see Microsoft for what they are: a mediocre application coder that has grown bloated beyond recognition and is already in decline, past its prime; desperate to leverage its monopoly to hold onto its position. Rolling out a fake, badly-executed copy of Mac OS X, 6+ years after Apple’s original debut, is just plain sad – almost as sad as the 11 years it took them to do it the first time (1984 vs. 1995).

Don’t misunderstand, millions upon millions will lap up Bill’s pabulum and excitedly and ignorantly line up at midnight for another box full of Windows dreck. After all, half of the people in the world are below average. Still, many will be forced to upgrade to a new computer to run Vista and, if Apple would finally advertise correctly, regularly, and heavily, the Mac platform could see significant and rapid growth in 2006 and beyond.

And don’t believe a word that the great samaritan/monopoly abuser says about which competitors he’s most worried. He has to be worried about Apple. If he’s not, Microsoft’s in for even more trouble than anyone can imagine. People like to say that the “OS Wars” are over. They’re not.

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73 Comments

  1. The word “overfocused” isn’t in my Mac;s dictionary either.

    Either your focused or not. “Overfocused” could be a trademark slogan for M$’s new Photo App.

  2. I love this quote:

    “In a show of pizzazz usually reserved for Apple, Gates was joined on stage by pop idol Justin Timberlake to introduce the new service.”

    So this is how they mimic Apple with their presentation? Drag out “Pop Idol” Justin Timberlake? JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE? If I was a Windows champion like Enderle or “He Who Must Not Be Named”, I’d be completely embarassed!

  3. whut gatez sayez iz true.

    why does the wOrLd hat3 gatez? iBm gets no flak, but wind0wz gets all the criticizm.

    its nOt fa1r. w1nd0wz works good. iHavenoproblemswithit

    kthx

  4. And how is it that a company that primarily focuses on hardware (IBM) could be considered M$’s biggest competitor?!?!

    And MDN, great job at putting yet another ad between the comment box and the magic word (“economic” is my all-too-ironic mw this time, btw). To be a site that promotes Apple and touts their simplicity and elegance, you sure do bastardize the concepts!!

  5. On stage with Apple: John Mayer, U2, Kanye West, Mynton Marsalis

    On stage with Microsoft: Justin Timberlake and i think at one time Bono (not U2 just Bono)

    Pizzazz? gimmie a break.

  6. “Pabulum” isn’t in my Mac dictionary (Oxford) either! Come on MDN, what’s with the Shakespearean vocabulary? We are mere mortals. ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”smile” style=”border:0;” />

    > “The much anticipated upgrade to Microsoft’s flagship
    > operating system displayed a new interface with 3-D
    > scrolling between different windows, which can appear
    > translucent to allow users to see the information beneath.”

    Uhhhhh…… looking through a frontmost window or several frontmost windows to see information in a buried window? Wouldn’t it be easier to just switch to the window one wanted to view? I don’t mean to be over-critical, and I’m sure Microsoft’s implementation won’t be completely idiotic, but I don’t see any utility for it (other than “eye candy”, something which Windows has been lacking for quite some time).

    > Translucent windows? Some rudimentary Exposé feature?
    > Puleeze, will the rest of the world actually fall for Gates’
    > and Microsoft’s B.S. again?

    Really… I can’t figure it out. Where do Mac users have translucent windows? Not that I need or want them (they might tend to be distracting), but other than a few widgets and small items (the dock, the Exposé blob, desktop clock, etc.), I don’t remember any translucence.

    Also, doesn’t Apple hold a patent on Exposé? Sock it to ’em!

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