Is Microsoft getting a bum rap?

August 21, 2008
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Mark Evans thinks there is a double standard when it comes to Apple and Microsoft. He says:

No matter how often [Apple] drops the ball with a service (MobileMe) or product (3G Apple iPhone) that doesn’t work, batteries (iPod Nano, MacBook) that over-heat or slashing prices only a few months a product has been released (original iPhone), Apple somehow manages to stay out of trouble.

And

If Microsoft screwed up as badly, the cacophony would be overwhelming with people calling for boycotts and Steve Ballmer’s head.

For one thing, we have to bear in mind that, while Apple’s market share has been increasing, Microsoft is still the 800-pound gorilla, with at least a 90 percent market share. Microsoft is the incumbent. Apple is the upstart. Apple represents the alternative. And, as such, they probably do get cut more slack.

People have a tendency to cheer for the underdog. It’s not as “cool” to endorse the favorite.

And then there’s the fact that Microsoft has not given anybody much to cheer about in a long time. Apple really has produced some impressive innovations over the past eight years: iPod/iTunes, Mac OS X, iPhone. In the mean time, Microsoft has given us more bloated software and disasters like .NET (does anybody even talk about that anymore? – what developer that built on that platform doesn’t regret it now?).

Name any Web 2.0 company and they are not using any Microsoft tools. Its all open source and Mac with perhaps some Flash – Does anybody really think SIlverlight is going anywhere? Apple represents the future, Microsoft the past. Microsoft is John McCain and Apple is Barak Obama. It’s not cool to campaign for McCain… but like Microsoft, he still might win – he just won’t be “cool” in the process.

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