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Ballmer Admits Google Apps Are Biting Into MS Office 293

twitter points out coverage of a discussion between Steve Ballmer and two Gartner analysts in which the Microsoft CEO admits that Google Apps is enjoying an advantage over Office by users who want to share their documents. He points to Office Live as their response to Google, and adds, "Google has the lead, but, if we're good at advertising, we'll compete with them in the consumer business." Whether or not they're good at advertising is still in question, if their recent attempts are any indication. Ballmer also made statements indicating some sort of arrangement with Yahoo! could still be in the works, but Microsoft was quick to step on that idea. Regarding Windows Vista, he said Microsoft was prepared for people to skip it altogether, and that Microsoft would be "ready" when it was time to deploy Windows 7.
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Ballmer Admits Google Apps Are Biting Into MS Office

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  • Well, here we go (Score:3, Interesting)

    by morgan_greywolf ( 835522 ) on Friday October 17, 2008 @10:02PM (#25421207) Homepage Journal

    Regarding Windows Vista, he said Microsoft was prepared for people to skip it altogether, and that Microsoft would be "ready" when it was time to deploy Windows 7.

    If you ask me, Windows 7 looks a lot like a response to Linux on the desktop. Now's the time for OSS developers to step up to plate and deliver a solution that will make Windows 7 look like child's play. I'm game.

    • Re:Well, here we go (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Darkness404 ( 1287218 ) on Friday October 17, 2008 @10:24PM (#25421313)

      If you ask me, Windows 7 looks a lot like a response to Linux on the desktop. Now's the time for OSS developers to step up to plate and deliver a solution that will make Windows 7 look like child's play. I'm game.

      Technologically, Linux and OS X are light years ahead of Windows, and will be by Windows 7. The problem is, some people will never use Linux unless it has a uniform UI (which, have you ever seen Windows?, Linux's UI is more uniform than even all of MS's products.) and other will not move to Linux unless *insert specialty application or game* is available on Linux. Still, the vast majority of users will use whatever is on their computer, be it Linux, Vista, XP, OS X, BSD, etc.

      • by grub ( 11606 )

        Linux's UI is more uniform than even all of MS's products

        Unless you're referring to the uniformity of a nice 80x24 text console, you're way off. Unix/Linux have oodles of different window managers.
        • by Darkness404 ( 1287218 ) on Friday October 17, 2008 @10:51PM (#25421453)
          Yes, tons of window managers, but the average user only has to pick one of 2 (or three if you count in XFCE) but if you stick with all the apps with a G as the first letter you can be assured a standard UI if you are using Gnome, likewise if K is the first letter you can be assured that it uses a standard UI for KDE, compare that with MS who has tons of different icons, etc. for different products which are all in the same time frame and first-party applications, see [] for an example of what I'm talking about.
          • but if you stick with all the apps with a G as the first letter you can be assured a standard UI if you are using Gnome, likewise if K is the first letter you can be assured that it uses a standard UI for KDE,

            Well, that makes sense. The problem with Linux, is that each app has its own widgets, its own theme, its own file selector etc. And when some programs install they don't even get into the menus so you can't open them. And some apps don't have packages for your distribution. And some apps only come as s

        • by SL Baur ( 19540 )

          Unless you're referring to the uniformity of a nice 80x24 text console, you're way off. Unix/Linux have oodles of different window managers.

          Yeah, so what? When Microsoft Windows was capturing its critical market share, there was a similar amount of variety there too.

          Choice is Good. Specialization is for insects.

          If it is strict interface uniformity you want, there is only one choice - Mac OS X. Amazing that it still looks similar to Macs in the 80s and also amazing that they've transitioned to a real O/S over that time.[1]

          (Macs are very cool for playing World of Warcraft, but for getting real work done, give me any decent Linux distro with KD

          • by HangingChad ( 677530 ) on Saturday October 18, 2008 @01:00AM (#25422093) Homepage

            Choice is Good. Specialization is for insects.

            Microsoft Dung Beetle. Now that's a catchy product name!

        • And you're free to pick one. On KDE, I can also pick one theme, and have it automatically applied to the two major widget sets.

          It ends up being quite a lot more uniform, for the apps I actually use, than Windows ever was.

      • by akoltz ( 1379875 )

        Technologically, Linux and OS X are light years ahead of Windows...

        This is just wrong. Regardless of how you feel about Windows as a whole, the NT kernel is easily among the best, if not the best on the market.

      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by wisty ( 1335733 )

        Anyone who says that Linux is technologically light years ahead of Windows is ... wrong. Stuff like OLE, the Com interface, the Jet database (which does the job of SQLite, not the other ones), data sharing API's and so on are much better in Windows that Linux. Yes, I have heard of Wine, and Mono. They are not the main point of of the open source software ecosystem, which has different goals to Microsoft; both technologically and from a business point of view..

        Of course, you could say that Linux (and OSX) ha

      • Re:Well, here we go (Score:5, Interesting)

        by hairyfeet ( 841228 ) <bassbeast1968 AT gmail DOT com> on Saturday October 18, 2008 @02:46AM (#25422449) Journal

        Hell,I'll probably get flamed to negative 1000 for this,but what the hey,I've got Karma to burn. If you want to know how to get Joe and Jane home user(along with Sam SMB) I'll be happy to tell you. As someone who has been working in PC repair more years than I care to count,as well as someone who tried to sell Linux boxes and watched them rot on the shelves,I can happily tell you the problems that need fixing. Here they are-

        1.-Make an ndiswrapper for those damned Lexmark all in one printers! Surely it can't be anymore difficult than those funky wireless "cards" which are nothing but a firmware chip and Windows. Those Lexmarks ain't changed in ages and are calling Windows GDI for everything so surely someone who can code ought to be able to figure that one out. But WAY too many of the home users(probably 85-95% here) have one of those damned printers. They are cheap,make good pictures,and do what they want it to do,so they WON'T go buy a $150 printer just to use a new and strange OS.
        2.-Games. Even those girls that say "Eeew,games are stupid and I can't see why you waste you time with those!" actually have at least one game they play(for some reason it is almost always AoE ! or II. I swear it is like catnip to females). While Wine is nice in theory,it is just too damned complex for Joe and Jane. It needs to work when you stick a disc in,ala "clicky clicky,next next next". If they can stick their Windows game disc and go Clicky Clicky,then they are happy campers. Which brings me to number three-
        3.-WalMart and Best Buy. Joe and Jane don't want to find their software by looking through some repo and trying to figure out what they want by some description that may be over their heads,they want to look at pretty pictures with simple descriptions so it is easy to choose. So maybe someone can talk Shuttleworth into either packaging similar Linux programs(games pack,office pack,school pack,etc) into a nice set of CD or DVDs that can sit on a shelf,or perhaps have the repos have nice little screenshots of the apps with very simple descriptions and a "learn more" button that would give a more in depth explanation.
        4.-Finally for the SMBs. MSFT may hate it and just wish it would die,but there is a damned good reason why VB6 is still the number three business language. It is because VB is the engine that runs many a SMB. I can't count the number of times I've walked into a place and their mission critical app,be it a POS,a billing app,customer database,etc, was a VB app.For SMBs VB just works and works well for those little "one of a kind" personalized apps that all SMBs seem to have a need for. An easy to use VB plugin would go a long way to converting your SMBs. Sadly though you'll never be able to convert around 25% thanks to those damned IE Intranet ActiveX laden "apps".

        So there you have it,my suggestions for switching Joe and Jane and Sam without having them go running back to Windows at the first sign of trouble. While some would probably be easiest to fix by helping out the ReactOS guys(and I'm sure they'd like the help) others like the repo idea could be implemented by any major distro with some work. But these are the ones that have been deal breakers when I have tried to convert users to Linux. Maybe if Win7 turns into a giant pile of super suck like Vista it will be easier to get them to switch. Or maybe they'll just do like most of my current customers and hang onto XP for dear life,I just don't know. But having even just 1 and 3 would go a LONG way to helping guys like me switch the customers I see walk through my door.

      • Wine is already a better Windows (98/2000/XP) than Vista. I wonder if Windows 7 will actually enhance compatibility. XP in a VM, like Classic in Mac OS X?

      • by Godji ( 957148 )
        I don't agree with your last point. People will go out of their way to get Windows even on a computer that came with something else, depite those still being the exception rather than the norm.

        For example, almost every Eee PC purchased by people around me gets its GNU/Linux removed and replaced by XP first thing in the morning. And that thing won't be running games or speciality apps.

        Most people will not bother to go through the 60 minutes of learning (less if one has above average intelligence) require
        • by Godji ( 957148 )
          I forgot: The reason why I use the GNU/Linux name (before I get bashed for it) is that I recently played a lot with Solaris. Believe me when I tell you - UNIX without the GNU tools is a bitch.
      • by Catil ( 1063380 ) *
        I don't think it's that certain speciality app or games that keep people on Windows and Apple, Ubuntu and Asus are doing a rather good job informing people that Windows != Computer and that there are alternatives.

        People are aware of Linux. The main problem is that there is no demand created. If you surf the web and come across interesting stuff to download and try out, it almost seems to be a physical law that it's for Windows, but there are enough apps for Linux. There is an OSS alternative good enough f
    • That's interesting.

      To me KDE 5 looks more responsive than Windows 7.

      Of course, I haven't tried either one since they are not out (or made?) yet.

    • by node 3 ( 115640 ) on Saturday October 18, 2008 @01:00AM (#25422091)

      If you ask me, Windows 7 looks a lot like a response to Linux on the desktop.

      Windows 7 is a response to Linux the same way Coke Zero is a response to Tab.

      Windows 7 is a response to Vista. People turned down the bloated system that is Vista, so Microsoft has made promises to fix all the issues and release a new system in two years' time. But as is always the case, the promises will be forgotten and the release date will slip again and again. But Windows 8, now that's going to really rock...

    • Serious point and not a troll, I'd hope that by the time Windows 7 arrived, KDE4 is fixed (and stop using end users as beta testers - it's not Windows). For now I'm sticking with KDE3, there's just too much missing from KDE4 to justify moving to it.

      • Yet another fucking moron repeating crap. Find out why kde4 was released, and go read the part where it says "don't use it, not for end users" ya?

  • by yppiz ( 574466 ) * on Friday October 17, 2008 @10:05PM (#25421221) Homepage

    I started a company last year, and I could have chosen to either: a) set up a Windows Server and buy multiple Office licenses, or b) sign up for Google Docs.

    Docs has worked out really well for us.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      Or, set up a Linux server and use OOo and configure it to do a few backups or set up a RAID.
      • by Anpheus ( 908711 ) on Friday October 17, 2008 @10:47PM (#25421427)

        Your solution is the most complicated to implement, even if it's the least expensive.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Frosty Piss ( 770223 )

          Your solution is the most complicated to implement, even if it's the least expensive.

          Maybe so, but honestly, Google Apps are not a particularly satisfying solution. Open Office is much much more suitable. Gmail maybe, but spreadsheets, word processing, and presentations? Google Apps just don't cut it.

          In my opinion...

          • by Lemmy Caution ( 8378 ) on Saturday October 18, 2008 @02:08AM (#25422333) Homepage

            Google Docs is useful as a collaborative text editor. Almost everything else about it - particularly formatting - gets broken much too often. I've been trying, earnestly, to use it for academic writing, and the results have been ridiculous: as in, depending on what browser I use, wordwrap may not work; internal links don't work; fonts change from time to time, etc.

            Ballmer is correct in noting (which, since noone RTFA, I should note contradicts the badly written summary) that Google Apps is not something that is worrying them: Open Office is. I would love Google Docs to step up, but it definitely has not, and seems to be trapped in the Google perpetual beta limbo.

          • Give Zoho [] a try, especially its word processor. Online, collaborative, and much more full-featured than Google's offering.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by SL Baur ( 19540 )

          Your solution is the most complicated to implement, even if it's the least expensive.

          Perhaps, but how much are your company's documents worth to you?

          I also would argue that Darkness404's idea would be the safest, regardless of cost.

      • by Firehed ( 942385 ) on Friday October 17, 2008 @10:48PM (#25421435) Homepage

        Google Apps has the MAJOR advantage of having live document collaboration, which AFAIK isn't even close to available in MS Office or For some people/companies this doesn't matter at all, but for others it'll make it the obvious choice. You can think of it like the collaborative features offered by Sharepoint and the like, but implemented in a way that is actually usable.

        On the flip side, you're going to need a lot of love from Gears if a hosted solution scares you. While Docs is fine for what I do most of the time (and the rest of the time I really need more of a layout tool, like Apple's Pages), I envision them seeing a lot more adoption if there were a desktop app that synced up with the cloud (whether Google's, or your own internal setup which could be as simple as a network share). And of course, pretty much anything that's not MS Office tends to have compatibility issues with the MS Office-using rest of the world, whether you like it or not. You can whine all you want about the lack of truly open standards for document exchange (besides plain text) and I'd agree with you all day long, but that doesn't fix the problem.

        • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward

          You can whine all you want about the lack of truly open standards for document exchange (besides plain text) and I'd agree with you all day long, but that doesn't fix the problem.

          No, but moving away from MS Office does.

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by zmjjmz ( 1264856 )
        Or just install OpenGoo on a Linux server and have everyone work from there. This way you own the documents you upload.
        • by mrsteveman1 ( 1010381 ) on Friday October 17, 2008 @11:13PM (#25421573)

          I don't want goo on my server, i keep my porn elsewhere for a reason.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by stephanruby ( 542433 )

          Or just install OpenGoo on a Linux server and have everyone work from there. This way you own the documents you upload.

          What do you mean by saying "you own the documents you upload"? Are you talking about legal ownership or physical ownership?

          There is nothing in the ToS of Google Apps that implies you don't own your own documents. And also, if you want physical local ownership, all of you have to do is enable Google Gears, and that will maintain local copies of your documents on your desktop/laptop -- so th

      • by yppiz ( 574466 ) *

        You're right, we could set up a Linux server for this. The main savings is not Windows vs Linux, it's not having to set up an internal server for document sharing. Our time and effort can instead go into our external servers.

        A larger company, with more tolerance for overhead, might reasonably make a different choice.

    • by Bazouel ( 105242 )

      Exactly. Same here :) It's not just university students that do it, as the article implies.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday October 17, 2008 @10:05PM (#25421223)

    . . . but trusting one's data to the "cloud" is just plain foolhardy. I'll keep local applications and local control, thankyouverymuch.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      The thing about the cloud is, it has more uptime than the average user can ever hope to have. For example, the average user makes no backups except perhaps on a yearly basis, even if one of Google's servers literally caught on fire, most of the data could easily be recovered. The average person doesn't have a RAID, so when one disk crashes the entire system crashes, and they don't have backups. Yes, for us geeks and our 1 TB external HDs, local fileservers, 8 GB flash drives and rsync we might be able to ha
      • by rtb61 ( 674572 ) on Friday October 17, 2008 @10:57PM (#25421501) Homepage

        Unless of course the network goes down, then zero access. It happens all the time, a ship drops and anchor in the wrong spot, somebody somewhere in the routing path configures the hardware wrong, power brownouts anywhere in that route and of course it is only in beta and the warranties are completely and absolutely less than worthless. Cloud computing is really all about data being distributed everywhere and not being locked into a limited number of locations where you have to pay rent to access it. Let's just call a spade a spade, rented access to your own data, ain't cloud computing it is greed computing.

        The future in computer software is FOSS and service and support. So yes the typical end user can not really set and up maintain a stable, secure and reliable system and that is why they pay for service and support, when they do need high reliability and uptime and for the majority of businesses in certainly is cheap enough to achieve, they just need reliable access to people who can provide it for them.

        As for the end user, easy simple access to most of their stuff, whether they are connected to the net or not is the most important, computers are not their life, they are just a means by which they can share photos, send a letter, browse the net, play a few games and maybe do a bit of shopping and bill paying.

        The cloud computing that ballmer et all keep waffling on about only exists because it is the only model they can envisage where they can maintain inflated profit margins, the service and support and fully distributed computing is a much more competitive, high performance and low profit margin market. The performance aspect, is all about companies providing services must be seen to perform, must continually demonstrate high skill and reliability and any failures will soon be reported through their potential and existing client base. This is where M$ is most behind the eight ball, with a reputation for poor service and support, lying to customers, ignoring and denying customer feedback and, routinely distributing unreliable and faulty products.

      • by Firehed ( 942385 )

        It's not just about uptime though. While I'll usually make the same arguments for the cloud, if something knocks out my internet connection I'm screwed regardless of whether it's available to everyone else or not. Yes, your data is on the whole a lot safer (at least with a company like Google that's not going away any time soon) in 99% of the cases, but the idea still scares a lot of companies.

        When Google implements something where you can configure the Apps For Your Domain content to sync down to a serve

      • by jamesh ( 87723 )

        Most of the time the problem is not 'the cloud' itself, but reachability. The cloud can have all the 9's it wants, but (at least for some parts of the world) the sort of SLA's with enough 9's to match the uptime of the cloud cost more $$$ than hosting the solution on site.

        And no matter what SLA's you have with your ISP, a backhoe operator can take you out for hours, or even days. You can back it up with wireless for email and stuff but I don't believe that wireless can cope with the sort of bandwidth requir

    • but it isn't for everyone.

      If you're a smaller organisation that has not got IT skills or dedicated IT staff, then the cloud can be very appealing. You don't need to worry about doing backups and data sharing with associates or traveling salespeople etc is a lot easier.

      In theory the cloud providers could go broke, with your data getting lost but that's a lot less likely than losing data due to a local server getting screwed.

      There is no single recipe that will will work well for all organisations. Some are se

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by multisync ( 218450 ) *

      trusting one's data to the "cloud" is just plain foolhardy

      Not to troll, but is it more so than trusting your data to proprietary software?

  • Misquote. (Score:4, Funny)

    by base3 ( 539820 ) on Friday October 17, 2008 @10:07PM (#25421231)
    Ballmer actually said "Google and their apps can bite me."
  • by garett_spencley ( 193892 ) on Friday October 17, 2008 @10:30PM (#25421349) Journal

    Ballmer was supposed to fucking kill Google. He's like Chuck Norris and stuff ... only with chairs. No way is this happening. I won't believe it. Slashdot is all lies.

  • This is a not true (Score:5, Interesting)

    by tkrotchko ( 124118 ) * on Friday October 17, 2008 @11:12PM (#25421571) Homepage

    I was there at the talk. What Ballmer said (and I'm paraphrasing) is that Google Apps have no audience; user growth plateaued months ago and that in their (MS's) own studies almost all college students buy MS Office and use it. He said the only time students are using Google Apps is when they need to collaborate on projects but he talked about how MS is working to beef up their own collaboration tools in Office 2007/08.

    Really guys, this is reaching.

    Ballmer is a good entertaining speaker, and Gartner analysts are not going to outfox the guy.

  • quick comparison (Score:3, Insightful)

    by British ( 51765 ) <> on Friday October 17, 2008 @11:27PM (#25421643) Homepage Journal

    Google Office-like apps: Netbook
    MS Office: bloated pig laptop that cost $3K.

    I'm just fine with the Google Apps. All the extra features that the latest revision of MS Office has that Google doesn't don't ever get any usage from me anyways.

    • MS Office: bloated pig laptop that cost $3K.

      And now, if TFA can be believed, Ballmer is going to put lipstick on it.

  • Ugh (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jav1231 ( 539129 ) on Friday October 17, 2008 @11:55PM (#25421811)
    As much as I am loath to say this, I seriously doubt Microsoft has to worry about Google-apps. Corp-America is not going to go Google-apps. But mind you, they WILL worry. Because Microsoft is so fucking egotistical as a company they can't envision anyone having something successful besides them. It pisses them off, esp. Balmer. They just can't accept that they should stick to what they're good at (were good?). If they put as much effort into making Windows better it WOULD be. They chased the search market in vain and the mp3 player in vain. They're a spoiled company that thinks they should have it because they want it. Microsoft never innovates. They copy or buy. They usually fail at copying. The XBox is a noted example of something they copied and succeeded at gaining market. Keep at it, MS! Pursue! The more money you waste on shit like online apps the more that won't go into Windows! Which is fine. The world would be better off if more people would move on to another OS.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      Microsoft copycat with the Xbox?

      That's why they were the first to put in a Hard Drive.
      The first to offer streaming downloads for movies.
      The first to offer downloadable games.
      The first to include a network adapter.
      The first to have a social gaming network for matchmaking and messaging built into the service.
      The first to implement a system wide achievement/trophy system.

      Yeah it's likea direct clone of... nothing... and that's why it's succeeding. It's not just ripping off anyone else. Everyone else is tryin

      • Google Docs is like a gimped wordpad

        Excellent summary. Wish it weren't true, but it is. It's another victim of Google's horrible attention span. They get a clever idea, and then ask the rest of us to imagine it working well, because they can't be bothered to actually get it to work.

        (If I were a fanboy about anything - and for me, that's like saying "if I were a necrophile about any species...") I might pass as something of a Google fan, so this is tough-love on my part. They spread themselves way too thin.

    • MSFT's biggest problem is that they have nothing to attract talented innovative staff except money. That's why they try to thwart everyone that stands to offer their target talent pool a better offer than they can. Nobody with any natural leadership and matching insight will ever sit on the M$ executive without either drawing gunfire from the rest of the board or jumping out the nearest window long before they can affect some substantial change.
  • by asifyoucare ( 302582 ) on Saturday October 18, 2008 @12:02AM (#25421853)

    And there's the problem with Ballmer. How about competing by making a better product?

    • by Saffaya ( 702234 )

      Advertising worked so well for sony and the PS2. Impeding sales of the best console of the time that had an incredible line-up (the DreamCast) by using only shallow promises of "Real time Toy Story graphics" and "connected to high speed networks" when in reality it took the PS2 two years to get any valuable game and it didn't ship with any online interface.

      Microsoft are the other masters of the marketng hype. If they start pushing Windows 7 now, they will at least sell as many as Vista did, regardless of th

  • by gelfling ( 6534 ) on Saturday October 18, 2008 @12:23AM (#25421929) Homepage Journal

    In my firm, which is a Fortune 50 company, we're actively abandoning MS Office for our own modification of Open Office. In fact OO3 does everything better - it handles all the problems of earlier versions like embedded OLE objects, it handles all our all 'legacy' junk AND it handles all of the various MS Office 2007 file formats which, as everyone knows were invented JUST to force people to lock in and upgrade. In fact all those Office 2007 formats are becoming the weird occasional exception for us as we move to ODF and such. Mostly we use MS Office 2007 formats as a required translation step from DOC to ODF since OO3 handles it that way by default: DOC > DOCX > ODF for instance.

    So being weird and unique, Balmer, we don't care. Soon MS Office will be just another legacy format we keep around for archival purposes like Lotus Wordpro, 123, AmiPro and the like. Good luck with that, Steve.

  • I find the Windows phenomenon to be quite interesting, almost depressing. There are very few things that Microsoft Windows clearly does better than Mac/Linux. There are a few things it simply does differently, and there are a lot of things it plane sucks at. Yet somehow, it manages to be "the" operating system. One of it's competitors is available both commercially and for free, another is available commercially. It doesn't even seem (in my experiences) to be easier to develop for Windows any more.

    The only

  • Sharepoint is a decent at storing word documents and making them searchable. Many companies are using it.

    So why don't we write something simliar for Open Office that does the same thing as google apps. Yah it sucks to have to setup a server, but if it's open and runs on linux then it won't be.

    I think this represents a major issue with open's for developers. We need developers to stop caring about themselves and think about avergage business uers...a hard boring thing to do I know.

  • Apparently the submitter is in an alternate universe and read a completely different article than the one submitted.

    In the quote where Microsoft "concedes" that Google is doing better, the quote is referring to online advertising and NOT any form of productivity software. Read the article yourself. About halfway down.

    The rest of the article is Ballmer boasting, and rightfully so, that no one uses Google Apps. Not even poor college students, except for occasional collaboration, and even then it's minimal.

  • That means microsoft hasn't released a decent operating system with updated technology since 2002. That is six years already and now they are saying they don't intend to release anything decent until 2010 (and based on Microsoft's previous timelines that really means 2012 at the earliest).

    If by the release of windows 7 Linux hasn't made a real dent into the desktop market share then I will change platform. Dear god, don't make me use windows.

  • "Your evil is weak, old man! [] If you destroy me, I will ... What am I saying, you can't destroy lunch."

    "DEVELOPERS! Nobody sweats the details of evil like Microsoft! Weâ(TM)ve worked hard on our evil! Our Zuneâ(TM)s as evil as an iPod any day! I wonâ(TM)t let my kids use a lesser evil!"

    "Ah, but we're working on a new approach. We're not evil."

    "Just creepy."

    "But in a totally not evil way."

  • The summary is a pretty drastic misrepresentation of the article. Balmer was nowhere near as positive about Google Apps as the summary indicates.

    Ok, I guess it is news when someone says anything positive about a competitors product. But Google Apps has a long way to go still before they have a measurable impact on any competitor, let alone Microsoft's Office Juggernaut.

Recent investments will yield a slight profit.