Random roundup July 19th 2007

things I read today..

New ways to sell Office

Interesting article with some good quotes from Chris Cap about the future. 

"We're very happy to be the leading vendor in the space and we want to continue to be the leading vendor in the space," he said. "We look at everything from ad-funded software to Web-based software to servers. Long term the way we differentiate from Google, it's the combination of all three: client, servers and services that is the winning strategy."

"We've put more of our marketing IQ beyond alternative business models and alternative distribution strategies in the last two years,"

While those economics may indeed be true, Capossela pointed out that it's not just about revenue. One of the challenges is whether people really want to see ads when they are in a spreadsheet or word processing program.

Microsoft beats Coca-Cola to become Britain's favourite brand

Microsoft wins the top UK superbrand awardExcellent commentary on this from the ever amusing Allister Frost, our man on the ground.  Good point about the dangers of marketers assuming they understand their consumer:

Now, I have as much respect for the experts as the next man, but I find it fascinating that the two polls could produce such wildly different results. For the experts to have placed both Apple and iPod in the top ten but for the public to place them 41st and 153rd respectively is quite revealing. Call me Mr Cynical Knickers, but could these experts be the type of people who use Apple Mac computers, wear iPods, and drive around in Minis while supping Red Bull bought from their local Waitrose store?

Singeing in the rain wishbone-shaped chest and neck burns, ruptured eardrums and a broken jaw when lightning traveled through his music player's wires

The dangers of listening to iPods in electric storms - remember kids "when thunder roars, go indoors".

Change or die

Kevin Turner's (MS COO) rallying call at the worldwide partner conference was to the point as he urged partners to adapt faster.  His view of 2008 also says a lot about what makes him tick:

"I see one thing in fiscal year [2008]," he said. "I see money... I can smell it. I can hear it. This is the year we are going to monetise that innovation."

Worth reading the transcript of the talk that Chris Caposella gave there too.  Especially gratifying for us Brits to see our beautiful countryman, Paul Duffy holding up the British interests there.

CHRIS CAPOSELLA: Before we start talking, let me just show off a couple of things here. One is you see that the VGA-quality video here is really, really beautiful. Notice I can show this full screen, much, much higher quality video than you were seeing in the M&S Portal, which is great. (Applause.)

So, Paul, you wanted to chat about some things?

PAUL DUFFY: Indeed. And I wanted to say thank you for calling me "beautiful" to start with. Also to make sure that you tell all our partners, while you have a chance, about the great revenue opportunities that Office Communication Services are going to provide to them.

Microsoft launches the OBA partner programme

We'll be talking a lot about Office Business Applications in the coming year and the team (including Daz, quoted) will be making a trip out to the UK in September.  New site all about it at obacentral portal. If you haven't read about it, you should probably familiarise yourself with it.  Also check out their blog.  More coverage from the WPC here.

iPhone fans and how they feel about 'smug' Appleimage

A nice little article about what owners of the iPhone think about it and about the 'smug' (his words not mine) company that markets to them.

I know Apple projects a sunny California disposition and people generally enjoy its products. I think the company also has a cocky attitude that can rub people the wrong way and may keep them from buying iPhones. Some fans took that personally.

It's certainly not hurting their stock price.