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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.
Thanks

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You forgot

by jkaras In reply to And when he releases a Wi ...

the "any key", the "auto correct" button, user license, and upgrade disk!

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A DIFFERENT SLANT

by FluxIt In reply to Microsoft Monopoly

Many are calling MicroSoft a monopoly. Meanwhile others are suggesting the MicroSoft is a dominant Oligopoly. All this is really not relevant unless you are going to sue MicroSoft. Well some us in effect did when they settled the Class Action lawsuit in Florida. I for one did not participate in that Class Action because I viewed it as a bunch of scummy lawyers drumming up business for themselves and my settlement was insignificant.

Bottom line is nearly all of us except for McNealy at Sun use MicroSoft products. Microsoft is here to stay. However, if I was writing a college paper I would look to the future of the information age. In the 80's a big push was the paperless office and CIM, CAD, CAM, CAPP, MRP, DRP, ERP etc... That is here today and maturing. So where are we headed?

One avenue to explore is considering information networks like they are public utilities but slightly different. Like electricity and communications are delivered to you home via shared conduits with customer owned equipment at the terminal point so is information.

Consider the wires delivering trons to your home and telecommunication companies share in the maintenance of these wires based on utilization. What if windows becomes the common media delivering, processing, and presenting information? What if a Windows consortium was to form and based on market share or ultilization companies were represented in the consortium to develop and maintain windows?

Obviously, MicroSoft would not like that but it sure would solve a lot of problems out there. The market would change drastically. Companies would compete on the merit of thier products that go into windows. It would remove the proprietary aspects of the operating system. Other operating systems would die. The market would become focused and streamlined.

On the otherhand, MicroSoft keeps a tight control on drivers and other code preventing the problems of the old days when there were huge conflicts between drivers and software versions. I remember those days. It was a nightmare. Many of the young ones probably do not know about how annoying the blue screen of death was. Those days were terrible. There were 1000's of reason's why it would happen. Today there is only 6 reasons.

Anyhow, I thought that would be a interesting twist on MicroSoft and the operating system.

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A Difference -

by JimHM In reply to Microsoft Monopoly

I believe Microsoft is using Monopolist pricing and market tatics with their products. Upgrade or else!

But with open source and Mac available they don't have a PC market monopoly. And I believe the market forces will drive Microsoft to change its tatics - as Opensource gains speed and support along with Linux - Ms will have to change or be left behind.

People are getting smarter to the face that poor quality product from MS - is not a corporate risk they are willing to accept anymore.

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Upgrade or else. . . . . .

by maxwell edison In reply to A Difference -

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Microsoft isn't alone in that regard. I just spent $25,000 "upgrading" AutoCAD now under the threat of having to pay $100,000 later, after January 15, 2004, when they "retire" the earlier version we're using.

Blackmail?

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Not BlackMail - Hostage

by JimHM In reply to Upgrade or else. . . . . ...

Your not being blackmailed - its called being a hostage - and paying the price to keep the hostage alive and well.

Other companies see Microsoft tatics and adopt them - hey why not if the big kid on the block can do it why can't we.

When the market has a dominate leader in a technology - they can use a monopolist pricing and market tatics on thier customers....

I guess its the pay me now or pay me loads more later... or stay at the unsupported version or change vendors - which has the better pricing.

We have been in the middle of replacing CA's products - and others that have attempted that tatic. Its funny - when these vendors find out that you are willing to pay the addition costs to replace and retrian staff. All of a sudden - they find a happy price point for you.

It's been like working with a car salesman - you got to get down to hardlines - and be willing to take the hit of a switch. When they realize that you get some pretty good 3 year deals.

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They do

by Oz_Media In reply to Not BlackMail - Hostage

"It's been like working with a car salesman - you got to get down to hardlines - and be willing to take the hit of a switch. When they realize that you get some pretty good 3 year deals."

That's what all MY fleet lease customers used to think too.

Bottom line, I always got the price I wanted in the end. You just avoided getting sucked in to the retail rip off and settled for the salesman's margin instead. Fine for both of you.

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It's not a LEGAL monopoly

by Oz_Media In reply to Microsoft Monopoly

But a consumer monopoly. People don't HAVE to buy Windoze, although most new PC's are packaged with Windows, you still have the option to change.

It is simply the masses that have adopted Windows that have made it a consumer monopoly. People that aren't computer savvy can but a computer, send email, download Incredimail and wbshots and think they are pretty much in the loop!

As time passes and new companies enter the market, the users will be more educated (after troubleshooting Windows for a few years)and will then start looking to less troublesome avenues.

Myself, other than the Vic20 phase I went through, have never really followed the industry or got into DOS programmig etc. I entered the Win 3.11 world by runnig a 300 seat call center that used 300 static IP's. Big headache.

Since I've been troubleshooting Windoze for years now and have since achieved my Master CNE cert, I have been made aware of more stable OS's, yet few offer the features and functionality we've all become used to now from Windoze.

As time passes, users won't NEED a pretty GUI interface from Mr. Gates and will look for real computing power and an inteface that works.

Gotta remember, there are a lot of parents and seniors who are still just learning the basics of email and saving pictures sent by their grandchildren. Their grandchildren have much more knowledge as it is now commonly taight in most (if not all) schools. The next generation will have a few more 'savvy' users and so on and so on...

Patience, and perhaps Bily G will not be the bully in the playground anymore.

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No monopoly - market share via fore sight

by Deadly Ernest In reply to Microsoft Monopoly

MS is not a monopoly there, and always have been, alternatives available. MS have a huge market share simply because the average user and corporate buyer has an IQ that score with a single digit, and a value below 5 (or they appear to have).

MS design software for easy use by non-technical people, ie 95% of the population; the fact that it also suits morons is a side issue. They design to the minimum standard for the majority of the market, and are bloody good at doing that.

When MS entered the market the majority of software was designed for research labs and tested to a fare-the-well, thus they were priced at a few thousand dollars each (comparable to paying about $20,000 today). MS marketed an inferior products that met minimum user needs for a hundred dollars or so. This made the software cheap enough for anyone to buy and coincided with IBM clone computers being available for a few thousand bucks instead of tens of thousands.

Most MS software was capable of being installed and set up for basic use by almost anyonbe, all the available opposition required a highly trained tech to install and set up. The wonder is not that MS got such a large share of the market, the wonder is that anyone elese retained any market share at all.

Since then people have stayed with MS on the basis of 'the devil you know', or too lazy to learn how to use anything else. As a result anyone wanting to lure average MS clients away from MS have had to mimic MS operations so that the users don't have to learn anything new.

Good points for MS have been dramatic reduction in software prices (here we are over 20 years later and they have not yet returned to the pre MS dollar prices despite inflation etc), easier user usability, general use of computers.

Bad points for MS are that it is still chintzy software, aggressive sales techniques (learnt from IBM, Prime, Apple, etc), a company setting some industry standards.

Personally I expect that MS will soon change some of their directions or start to see major changes in their market share.

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If you are really serrious about this them

by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to Microsoft Monopoly

Try evaluting different applications that do the same thing. As Windoes is the default standard you could compare Word Perfect Office against M$ Office and there are numerious others but that is just a starting point as to what top look for.

While M$ does have a Monopoly it isn't in the conventional sence as almost every PC uses Windows and there is a price incentive to use M$ products made by M$ to their OEM System Builders and the like but even now I believe that Dell is supplying Word Perfect as an alternative to M$ Office.

What would happen in a real monopoly is that there would be no improvment of anything and constant rebadging of existing product to sell more but M$ is belatedly making an attempt to try to make their products mo=re secure than they currently are and there are other products available that do in fact lead M$ as not even Microsoft can hope to supply 100% of the PC software market. I know they would like to be in this position but they will never get there as there are currently too many products available for areas where M$ doesn't supply software.

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