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Microsoft Monopoly

By bealy25 ·
Hi, as part of my college work I am investigating into whether Microsoft has a monopoly on the personal computer market, and the positive and negative effects of their market position on consumers. Any feedback regarding your opinions and ideas on the subject (good or bad?) would be much appreciated and help me gain a greater insight of the topic in hand.

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not at all

by Passwordchanged In reply to Microsoft Monopoly

MS monopoly? I think not, not while there's a choice to go Linux or Macintosh. give the monopoly thing a rest.

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by jkaras In reply to Microsoft Monopoly

Microsoft is a monopoly due to it's agressive sales to the merging computer companies at that time. They sold their product like any other product would, the computer manufacturers chose to utilize their product. Regardless of the motives ect.. there was a choice that all made to best sell their product no one twisted their arms.
The result was a universal standard that all other operating systems modeled their product from it for ease of use to gain customer familiarity to use their product. Mac's dont offer other operating systems on their computers but you can still load any operating system on them like pcs. Why is it that power companies or phone companies offer a choice of services? Where you live is determined what company you are stuck with, you dont have a choice and cant fire them from service, hence no choice. We may desire everything we buy to have a choice right down to the most minute desire, but we still have a choice to alter that product to suit our needs. The only problem is warrantee conflict and more money.

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by FluxIt In reply to Input

Microsoft does sell its products JUST like the others do. It is just that the others have been unsuccessful business men.

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monopoly versus market share

by maxwell edison In reply to Microsoft Monopoly

Microsoft is not a monopoly, but rather it has a very commanding market share. There's a big difference.

Major League Baseball is a monopoly. Public utilities are a monopoly. Microsoft is not a monopoly.

A monopoly gives the consumer no other choice. In today's computing world, the consumer has alternative choices to using Microsoft products - indeed there are many alternative choices.

Does Microsoft's strong presence in the market give them an advantage? Sure it does. Is it an unfair advantage? I suppose that's a matter of opinion. But even if it is, therefore what? And if you're a competitor, before you judge Microsoft's advantage to be unfair, ask yourself this: If YOU had such an advantage, would you still call it unfair? Probably not.

Market forces helped Microsoft become the dominant player in the computing world. Market forces are the only thing that could (and should) cut into their dominant market share. Build a better mousetrap, convince people that they WANT and NEED your better mousetrap, and you can short Microsoft stock all the way to the bank.

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Functional Monopoly

by TheChas In reply to Microsoft Monopoly

Microsoft has a 'functional' monopoly for both the Operating System and Office application markets.

While it is true that there are other options, there combined total is far to small to be considered competition.

Further, at many schools and the majority of businesses you have NO choice but to use Microsoft products.

On the negative side, the cost of Microsoft operating systems, and Microsoft Office are much higher than they would be if Microsoft did not have a virtual lock on the PC market.

On the plus side, you have a wide variety of other applications that function very well on nearly all PCs.

Further, the cost of PC hardware is lower than it might be if hardware manufactures had to support a number of different operating systems.

All in all, Microsoft's virtual monopoly is a good thing for the PC consumer.

Like most large companies, the monopoly is sometimes misused to force a competing product out of the market.


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Words mean things - misuse of words dilutes things

by maxwell edison In reply to Functional Monopoly

A "monopoly" is just that - no more, no less, regardless of any modifier attached to it. A monopoly is the exclusive ownership of the supply of a commodity, or a commodity controlled by one party, etc.

If computing technology is the commodity, or if operating systems is the commodity, Microsoft does not control or own all of the available supply. The word "monopoly" is being misused in the case of describing Microsoft's dominant market position. Does Microsoft conduct unfair business practices? Maybe they do, maybe they don't. Do they apply unfair "pressure" on competitors by convincing computer manufacturers to pre-load their software? Perhaps. But does Wal-Mart apply unfair "pressure" on their competitors by buying merchandise by the boat load instead of by the case? Sure they do. But dealing with it for what it is, not for what it's not, is the best way to deal with it - the best way to overcome it.

To argue "monopoly" when none exists is to misidentify a situation. The more exact a problem or circumstance can be described, the more likely a successful solution or plan of action can be implemented. A sure way at failing to solve a problem is to not accurately identify it. If Microsoft's commanding market share is the (perceived) "problem", what is the MOST accurate way to describe it? The answer will shed light on the best way to overcome it.

I'm not sure about the numbers, but didn't Ford Motor Company dominate the American automobile market for a decade or so? Today, Microsoft might hold a 90% share (or 85% or whatever it is) of the operating system market, just like Ford Motor Company sold 85% - 90% of the cars for a while. Some automobile companies folded under the intense market forces working against them. But other companies figured out a way to compete with Ford, just like companies today should figure out ways to compete with Microsoft.

When that happens, the consumer will surely be the beneficiary.

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by TheChas In reply to Words mean things - misus ...

Max, I understand your point.

The ONLY reason that Microsoft is not a 'classic' monopoly is that they do not want the government intervention that would result.

The primary reason that Bill Gates invested in (gave money to) Apple was to prevent Apple from going under. Thus making Microsoft a true monopoly for the personal computer market.

If you want to get technical, Major League Baseball is not a monopoly.
MLB was officially declared to be exempt from the anti-trust laws meant to regulate monopolies.

Sort of like how the tomato is classified as a vegetable and not the fruit it biologically is.


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What is a monopoly?

by Cactus Pete In reply to Words mean things - misus ...

From AmosWeb:

monopoly: A market structure characterized by a single seller of a unique product with no close substitutes. This is one of four basic market structures. The other three are perfect competition, oligopoly, and monopolistic competition. As the single seller of a unique good with no close substitutes, a monopoly firm essentially has no competition. The demand for a monopoly firm's output is THE market demand. This gives the firm extensive market control--the ability to control the price and/or quantity of the good sold--making a monopoly firm a price maker. However, while a monopoly can control the market price, it can not charge more than the maximum demand price that buyers are willing to pay.


exclusive control of a particular market that is marked by the power to control prices and exclude competition and that esp. is developed willfully rather than as the result of superior products or skill

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A board game!

by jkaras In reply to What is a monopoly?

new out is ghettopoly that acyually has a crack rock, pimp, pot leaf as the game pieces to name a few! The chinese immigrant that thought of the idea claims that he attempting to breakdown stereotyping? He also claims that their is future releases of hispanic and asian versions.

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And when he releases a Windows Version

by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to A board game!

The pieces will be a CTRL/ALT & DEL Key right?

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