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CNet article [news.com.com]
Although no specific plans have been made, executives within Microsoft are examining whether it makes sense to release ad-supported versions of products such as Works, Money, or even the Windows operating system itself
An ad-supported version of the operating system could make some sense, the Microsoft researchers argue in their Thinkweek piece, noting that the product reportedly earns $9 per year per user.
"It seems possible that we could match that revenue via ads, but there are difficult UI (user interface) issues to solve, since the OS does not have a natural way to display ads that does not annoy users," the Microsoft workers said in the paper.
To make this work, I would think they would need to 'own' the advertisers so they could avoid giving up the X percent on the backend to a provider. If it's going to work, then the new MSN PPC advertising product is going to have to be a success first.
How long until I can get a 'free' advertiser supported laptop or PC?
"If it's going to work, then the new MSN PPC advertising product is going to have to be a success first."
I think if Microsoft actually deployed an ad-based Windows, advertisers would flock to it, to a degree unprecedented in human history. Such a platform would ensure the success not only of the ad-based Windows but a thousand other systems that would spin-off and use the same advertiser network. (Just like Google is doing with their stable of advertisers.)
as for ad supported office...
Hi I'm clippy the paper clip.
I see your writing a letter...
perhaps you would like to shop online for a microsoft keyboard or a more comfortable chair?
Easier said than done.
Let's be honest: Windows has gotten so much better. I just bought a new computer and I'm amazed at how easy it is now. Maybe because I remember the days when I had 16 disketes with Windows 3.1. Now whatever gadget I add, is recognized and added automatically.
I think MS is preparing for the eventual free, high quality OS that is surely in the offing from Google.
In 1994, IBM made a huge mistake. If they had chosen to give OS2 Warp away free, they'd have all but killed Microsoft. I'm not sure that the opportunity will arise again.