Linked by Eugenia Loli on Tue 15th Nov 2005 06:14 UTC, submitted by Anon_Poster
Microsoft Even as Microsoft readies a host of new ad-supported online services to battle rivals, the software maker has been mulling a plan to offer free, ad-supported versions of some of its desktop products, CNET has learned.
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RE: in the future...
by japail on Tue 15th Nov 2005 15:57 UTC in reply to "in the future..."
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1997: In the future all services will be free or ad-supported.
2000: NetZero: Internet access is a civil right!
2005: PeoplePC: Please pay us a monthly fee to look at our ad dialer.

Certain companies have a lot of success with ads, but it would be a mistake to assume that ad revenues are an invariant revenue source that will support entire industries. Who really wants that anyway? All that means is that the cost of supporting these companies will be transferred to the goods you actually pay for, independently of whether you use these services or not. If you don't use MS Office, do you really want the cost of advertising there spread out over your shoes, food, clothing, and hammers?

Eventually companies will want to see a lot of returns on their advertising investments. They aren't going to tolerate the click fraud that has plagued Ad Words, or people becoming so blind to static web ads that they don't even look at them if they don't block them. If they can generate more sales with a 12s placement in a television show than a month somewhere in Microsoft Office do you think they'll pay Microsoft a lot of money?

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