Is Microsoft ‘Buying-Off’ Linux Netbook Vendors? [Updated]
There seems to be something of a military campaign afoot. One that surely shows signs of desperation and anxiety on behalf of the instigator.
First we had Asus telling it’s potential customers that “It’s Better With Windows” using phraseology such as:
“Windows helps you easily get online and connect to your devices and services – without dealing with an unfamiliar environment or major compatibility issues.”
And now we hear that PC World (IMHO probably the worst place to buy a PC or get technical advice anywhere in the UK) are dropping Linux netbooks too. And why?
… because Windows makes it easier to share content, and provides customers with a simpler, more familiar computing experience on the move,
Share content huh? Does Ubuntu (or any other Linux distro of choice) work with Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, Google Apps, or anywhere else where we “share” content? Does email work? Does OpenOffice.org allow me to share stuff with those unfortunate enough to have spent hundreds of pounds on another Office suite? (Hint: The answer is Yes.)
Simpler… Hmmm, I wonder how much truth there is in this? How hard is it to install software on [say] Ubuntu vs Windows. Wander over here and take a look. (It’s pretty funny really).
familiar – Well, OK I’ll give them that. But I could make Ubuntu blue and have big child-like buttons if I really wanted to. Other than that though – what’s the big deal? I have a mouse, keyboard, screen. Yep, check. I move the mouse and click (or double click) on things and I type stuff. Yep. Check. Ahh no I’ve got it. The familiarity is with the dear old BSOD. Now I don’t get that. In fact my PC doesn’t really crash at all. It doesn’t need defragging (whatever that is), it doesn’t need disinfecting, it doesn’t require frequent re-builds because it gets so slooooooooow after a few months of use. Now I see. That’s what users want and are familiar with.
And how about all those Drivers we have to install and update and search the ‘net for? Hey? Drivers? What are they?
And how often do you update your Anti-virus software? You do have AV software don’t you? Oh of course, sorry I forgot. Nope. Viruses are not really much of an issue with a proper operating system. Take a look at the Wildlist.org (the list of “Active” computer viruses) All 451 from March this year target the Win32 API.
And how about all those strange licenses that many people don’t read, but that “protect” you from doing something illegal – like helping your neighbour perhaps?
This whole thing reminds me of the stupid and cringe-worthy adverts you see in the press where Vendor X says that they “Recommend Proprietary OS Home Premium”. Do they hell. Do you think they really believe that? Or do you think they have been given incentives to say so? I often wonder if there could be a case here with the Trades Description Act (if that still exists). IANAL so don’t really know but it seems as though many vendors’ adverts are not being totally honest when they make these recommendations. It’s bloody obvious they are being paid in some form or another to say that.
So, it seems to me that Microsoft are getting a bit fed up with all these really cool little netbooks running Ubuntu or Android or something else that isn’t Windows. They have very deep pockets and can afford to buy off some of the people some of the time. But I do not think they can afford to buy everyone all of the time and some vendors probably have a bit more integrity in the first place.
I suggest that you shop around and – even if you buy a PC with Windows for some weird reason – you go to a vendor or supplier who has not been bought off. At least you can have some level of trust in them.
Of course, you could always visit Naked Computers.org and find a vendor that will sell you a computer without an operating system at all. You can then install Ubuntu or something else on it. You almost certainly have a legal CD of XP lying around somewhere. I have several and don’t even use it anymore, so why should I be forced to buy more of their crap, unsafe, bug-ridden software?
Phew. Well. I’m glad I got that off my chest.
A day after an Asus Eee PC running Google’s Android operating system was shown at Computex Taipei, top executives from the company said the project will be put on the backburner. …
… “Frankly speaking, the first question, I would like to apologise that, if you look at Asus booth we’ve decided not to display this product,” he said. “I think you may have seen the devices on Qualcomm’s booth but actually, I think this is a company decision so far we would not like to show this device. That’s what I can tell you so far. I would like to apologise for that.”
He declined further comment on the subject.
Yeah right. Of course he did.