Some Microsoft news items from this week that did not find posts of their own:
Ed Bott notes the first appearance of Vista OEM prices (for smaller OEMs) and Microsoft Answers ‘Vista OEM’ Questions. If you actually need to buy a retail copy of Vista, hopefully you’re savvy enough to not pay full price. Best line:
Going OEM means you don’t get the skimpy manual or other scraps of paper that comes with the regular retail version. But when (was) the last time a basic Microsoft manual told you anything you needed to know?
For a completely different demographic: Yes, there is a Windows Vista Starter Edition.
Microsoft released the software development kits (SDKs) for Windows SharePoint Services 3.0, Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007, and the Microsoft Office Project 2007 platform.
Shocking news: Microsoft hurt by poor Live branding, analysts say.
Stop me if you have heard this one before: Symantec warns of new zero-day Word attack. This one too: Windows Defender Lets Spyware Slip onto Vista PCs.
Nintendo profits soar and the Wii now does the Internet – Wii news channel debuts early. Meanwhile, Sony’s PlayStation 3 to Debut in Europe, Mideast, Africa and Australia on March 23.
The two main evangelizers of the Linux operating system, Open Source Development Labs (OSDL) and the Free Standards Group (FSG), are merging to form the Linux Foundation.
The duopoly of Windows Mobile and Symbian is to face its biggest challenge yet, with six big names in mobile telephony backing the development of a new Linux-based software platform for mobile phones.
The founders of the LiMo Foundation are handset makers Motorola, NEC, Panasonic and Samsung, plus two big operators – NTT DoCoMo and Vodafone
Last November, several vendors got together to form a group called the Linux Phone Standard (LiPS) Forum to help their use of Linux on mobile phones better compete with Microsoft’s Windows Mobile and Symbian’s offerings. Apparently, that wasn’t enough because another group of vendors have gotten together with similar intent – Operators plan to stuff Microsoft, Symbian with mobile Linux:
A powerful bunch of players in the mobile phone sector announced plans to build an open Linux-based operating system for mobile devices.
The group, made up of Motorola, NEC, NTT DoCoMo, Panasonic Mobile Communications, Samsung Electronics, and Vodafone, said it would form an independent foundation to promote the platform. In a statement today, the group said the foundation would “leverage the benefits of community-based and proprietary development”.
There’s more from Nancy Gohring at InfoWorld on the as yet unnamed group:
The creation of a common platform might help spur growth of Linux phones, a segment that has been hampered by fragmentation, said Tony Cripps, an analyst at Ovum. The Linux handsets on the market now use unique specifications, making it difficult for developers to create applications that can work across different devices, he said.
The lack of an open, common approach has also meant that Linux handsets haven’t been able to compete directly with leading mobile operating systems from Symbian or Microsoft, each of which nurtures an open application development ecosystem, he said.
The presence of operators like Vodafone and NTT DoCoMo that order large volumes of handsets is significant. If such a large and influential operator as Vodafone adopts a Linux handsets based on this platform, then other operators are likely to adopt the same or similar phones, Cripps said.
This will be the third mobile Linux group to launch within a year, joining the Linux Phone Standards (LiPS) Forum and the Mobile Linux Initiative (MLI). Like the new foundation launched on Friday, the LiPS Forum aims to focus on the creation of APIs to enable interoperability of applications across Linux handsets.
PalmSource Inc., France Telecom SA and Orange SA are among the leaders of LiPS. The MLI, with members that include Motorola and PalmSource, is working on unifying developments around the mobile Linux kernel.
While MLI isn’t involved in the new foundation, it is likely to work with the new organization in the future.
Three groups? I must have missed one.