Microsoft Takes Another Jab At Google

February 22, 2012

It would seem Google has Microsoft Scared!

After being outclassed by Google in the search, advertisement, email, browser, and smartphone/tablet markets, Microsoft is striking out to protect one of the biggest cash cows, Microsoft Office.

In an attack ad released by Microsoft a few days ago on Youtube, a slick youngster, Google, is portrayed trying to sell their Google Docs software to a stuffy corporate lady. They make the salesman come off as a snake-oil type, pointing out problems with Google Docs, while also poking holes in Google’s business model.

The attack ad is a parody of the Moonlighting theme song, which was an eighties television show, titling the video “Googlighting.”

You can watch the video on Youtube here: Watch on Youtube

Description of Video

Given their recent attack on Google for abusing a well known IE bug that other sites, including Facebook are using, instead of fixing their browser, it would seem that Microsoft is really feeling threatened by Google right now.

The description of the video on youtube reads “What happens when the world’s largest advertising business tries to sell productivity software on the side…”

During the video, the Corporate lady asks questions about Googles office software, meant to show it as unreliable.

For instance, the corporate lady asks what happens if they need to edit the product while internet is not available and suggests that companies are “lab rats” for Googles Microsoft Office alternative, Google Docs.

Microsoft also make a point of suggesting that Google might pull the rug out from under the program, with the Google representative saying “different, better, completely gone, who knows what the future holds for Google”.

Google Has Microsoft Running Scared

It is slightly amusing that they released it to Youtube, which is Google owned, although the gist of the video is not that Google is bad at hosting videos, just doesn’t offer a good Microsoft Office Alternative.

However, what is more amusing is that Microsoft is so threatened by Google Docs that they felt the need to make a cheesy attack ad. Attack ads in politics typically say a lot more about the candidate running it, then those they are attacking and this is not an exception.

While Microsoft has done a great deal in regards to the personal computer, and to a degree the server, Microsoft Office remains their biggest money maker and serves to tie people to their operating system.

A company employing windows tech and utilizing windows software is also probably a lot more comfortable to get involved with Windows Server Licensing, which can be quite expensive and restrictive.

So, I can understand how retaining this market share is essential for Microsoft’s Future, especially considering how most of their other products are being overtaken.

However, this jab at Google is unneeded and if anything shows how threatened Microsoft is by Google.

For one, Google Docs isn’t really a direct competitor in the corporate market to begin with. Unless they can get their Chrome Book, or perhaps an Android Tablet, to take off in business settings, their cloud based software is not really suited for most corporate environments. And, if they do get Chrome Book off the ground, most of the issues Microsoft Mentions will get fixed, like being able to save a local copy of a file and merge it back in when you get Internet Access or having access to the cloud via their cell phone connection.

The personal market or smaller tech industries, especially ones that are decentralized, like web design firms, sure, but some stuffy bureaucratic corporation is going to be stuck on the “Where is my Excel” train for some time, not to mention all the red tape they would need to go through to even think about removing some execs Microsoft Word.

At the end of the day, the number of people that will look at that add and say, “Gee we were thinking about using Google Docs as a Microsoft Office Alternative, but this ad changed my mind” is pretty small.

However, it does a great job of exposing Google Docs to people who did not know about it before. I can certainly see how people might even be drawn to give it a serious look if it dangerous enough to Microsoft that they make some cheesy attack add.

Open Office a Bigger Threat

If I were them, I would be more worried about Libre Office/Open Office as a threat to their Microsoft Office business market.

I have already seen one of my business clients, without any recommendations from me, switch his tax franchise offices to Open Office. He has franchises in several local cities and most of his employees are older minimally computer literate ladies.

While for certain types of editing, the Libre Office certainly leaves somethings to be desired, for basic document creation and spreadsheets, which is all most corporate environments use, Libre Office is more than qualified to replace Microsoft Office.

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