In a surprising development today, Microsoft has announced that it will release a free-download version of its popular Windows operating system. This will be done sometime in September 2006, before the corporate version of the next version of Windows, Windows Vista is released. It is expected that this will consist of the simplified version of Windows XP. A spokesperson for Microsoft supposedly wrote on the Microsoft Developer network that this was being done because the stripped-down version, launched last year, did not have many takers, and thus will now be used to deal a death blow to systems like Linux, which are generally made available for free. This will be akin to Linux, where premium version come at a price and the free ones have less features. Although, it would differ in one aspect, the source code will still not be made available. At the end of the post, this unidentified source in Microsoft told us that it was Microsoft’s vision to see total domination of the operating system segment. It went on to say ‘of course, with so many more users, we will have an even more crappy product which doesn’t work at all, even worse than the current situation’.
In fact, in a situation similar to what happened to Google Base, a beta download from freewindows.microsoft.com page had also been made possible, before embarrassed Microsoft officials took it offline, saying that it wasn’t for public release yet, and they were just testing the concept internally, to see how many of their employees wanted to commit ‘suicide’ by downloading our OS.
It seems that Microsoft is having trouble keeping it’s plans secret, with the much-publicised leak of its Origami project. In fact, it seems a bad publicity management times from all companies, with leaks from Apple (about switching to Intel cores), Google (unlimited storage for users), etc. It seems that they all need to pull up their socks and learn to give their users a surprise.
Happy April Fools’ Day!