Linked by Howard Fosdick on Mon 13th Dec 2010 23:11 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless It's hard to predict the future because we humans prefer to think in terms of familiar paradigms. Even the most brilliant of our species are subject to this flaw. Now, Microsoft faces its turn. The owner of the operating system that likely runs your personal computer, the company that achieved monopoly with Windows and ducked the Department of Justice's scythe to keep it, faces a midlife crisis as the world goes gaga over portable consumer devices. This is the story of what's happening to Microsoft in the handheld operating system markets -- and how it parallels the earlier, similar journeys of IBM Corporation and Digital Equipment Corporation. Can Microsoft achieve dominance on mobile devices?
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It is actually shocking to me to read some of these comments. If I took Open Office to *any* of our clients and said, "Hey it's free," and suggested a migration, we'd probably be fired.

Me too and still I have migrated some SMEs from pure Microsoft OS + MS Office to Linux. Why? Well... the customer demanded it. Look. Just because something is free it does not mean that it is wise to MIGRATE to it. It always has to make sense. If the cost to migrate from MS Office to an open source office suite is high and it does not justify to migrate and it does absolutely make no business sense to migrate, then why migrate?

Is MSOffice perfect - heck no. Does it beat the pants off of open source competitors - by far. People miss the point that just b/c it's expensive, a LOT of people will gladly pay for it because it works so well.
If it works well for you AND you make your money with using MS Office then stay. Don't migrate. b/c is not expensive does not mean you have to move to it. Most of my customers don't make their money by using any office suite. Usually they make their money with other things and they have specialized applications for that. Using an office suite is just something they use for writing an letter or making a quick spreadsheet. So using MS Office,, Libre Office, Google Docs, whatever.... all of them are good enough for them. Or to say it the other way around: None of them will gain or loose an business by using MS Office or What office suite they use is absolutely secondary.

It's hard to explain that to people who brag about how many movies they've downloaded or how the day their favorite artist releases a new cd, they download it for free..without even thinking there's anything wrong with it. This is not directed at anyone in particular, just the /. mindset permeating to a much nicer and friendlier forum.
/. mindset is not something you typically find in the business world.

We don't have a single client, in 8 states, that could work without Win/Office.
I don't doubt that statement, but let me ask you something: What would happen if (for what ever reason) Win/Office would be prohibited worldwide? Would your clients all go into bankruptcy? Maybe. If you ask me then I would guess that some of them will indeed and that a bigger part will adapt and find alternatives. The business world is not so stiffy as you tend to describe it.

Yes, they can use Google Apps for email. What I find interesting is when people say it's lower maintenance - it's NOT. People's Internet Connections go out all the time; certainly much more often than their well managed Exchange Server.
Really? In an business environment? Maybe the states are differed then Switzerland (where I am from), but here I have yet to see one of my customers having significant internet connection issues.

Again we see the paradigm of if the broadband is out, our clients can still use Sharepoint, Exchange/etc and all of it.

Linux is a blast to mess around with. Open Office and all variants will let you produce a somewhat decent document. They all suck in comparison to MSFT's product lines and they're going to for a long time. Why?
What kind of business is so ultra giga dependent on how decent the document looks? I am not going to change my bank or my insurance if they are sending me a document that does not look so ultra super duper decent. At the end the decentness of the document is not important to me and to most business customers. Or are you one of the customers that will choose some crappy transportation company (as an example) just because their billing documents look decent? No way!

The same reason artists are giving up on producing products; no one wants to pay for anything anymore.

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