Microsoft doesn’t need to copy anyone. It needs to be Microsoft

By Kip Kniskern | Posted September 5, 2013 45 comments

Earlier today, Paul Thurrott let off some steam (granted, he’s never been very shy about that), ranting about the perceived notion that Microsoft has taken to copying Apple when it should be, in Thurrott’s estimation, copying Google instead. In making his points in a blog post titled Microsoft is Copying the Wrong Company, Thurrott lets slip a number of factual errors in coming to his conclusions (although of course we respect his opinion and his right to express it!). We’ll deal with the errors first, and then let on some of our own interpretations about the future of Microsoft as it enters the post-Ballmer era.

First, and this is a crucial mistake, Thurrott says:

First, Google doesn’t require device makers to pay for Chrome OS or Android, so those systems are free for anyone to use as they see fit.

More correctly, the second half of the statement is where the mistake lies. It’s true that Google doesn’t require device makers to pay for its software. It’s also true that much of the disruption facing Microsoft’s business model was initiated by Google’s offering up Android for free. However, they did that on the backs of some intellectual property they didn’t happen to own, and Microsoft and others stepped in and reminded the device makers of their patent responsibilities.  Now, even though Google doesn’t charge for Android, those device makers certainly do pay, to the tune of about a billion dollars in annual revenue for Microsoft, last we heard.

This is more than just semantics. Microsoft’s recent deal with Nokia was carefully crafted to gain the maximum benefit out of monetizing Nokia’s patent portfolio. You can read that as: if you thought Microsoft was playing hardball chasing down Android patent violations up until now, you ain’t seen nuthin’ yet. Nokia is going to come at Android like gangbusters (in the very literal sense of the word). Microsoft won’t get the money, except perhaps as sort of a back door payment to Nokia, but it could take some significant air out of that “Android is free” balloon.

Then, Thurrott goes down another questionable path, arguing that:

Microsoft wants the advantages of Apple’s deep vertical integration while denying it to their partners. Microsoft’s PC and device maker partners cannot modify Windows at all, and can only apply their own apps onto of Windows in very subtle and minor ways. Only Microsoft’s own devices can benefit from insider knowledge of these OSes.

This is the age old “secret back door” argument that Microsoft haters have been making since back when it was, you know, true. In fact, even with Windows 8 and Windows Phone in development, Microsoft has held its internal software developers to use the same APIs that it makes available to the public, much to the consternation of some of those internal teams.

The far bigger problem is not that Windows Consumer Apps developers or the teams that make Surface are using secret and proprietary APIs, it’s that they can’t get a decent Mail or Photos app out the door no matter what APIs they’re using.  As far as devices go, any back door knowledge of Windows RT or Windows 8 certainly didn’t do the Surface family any good, either. If there are secret back doors, we’re sure not seeing the results of them.

Thurrott then touches on what really IS at the heart of the problem:

With Android and perhaps with Chrome OS, Google is attempting—and perhaps succeeding—at rendering Windows irrelevant. Which it sort of already is. Metro has gotten off to a slow start, obviously, and there hasn’t been a major new Windows desktop application in years. You couldn’t name one if you tried. And the top two desktop applications, Chrome and iTunes, are designed to push users away from Microsoft’s platforms and onto Google and Apple platforms. These developments put arguments about saving the desktop in perspective, eh?

Microsoft has been, and continues to be, both late and lame when it comes to giving consumers what they want. It allowed Internet Explorer to flounder, missed on music (multiple times), missed on phones, missed on tablets, and missed on apps. This wasn’t because Windows costs more, or because Google doesn’t play fair, it’s because Microsoft is too slow to be a consumer company. It moves too slowly. It has multiple layers too many of middle management. It lacks vision. And it lacks the conviction that giving the everyday consumer what they want is, well, worth it.

For most of Microsoft’s 30 year existence, it made boatloads of money by cutting deals in boardrooms and by driving the most hard-ass and ruthless sales teams in the business. It coerced and cajoled its way to the top, and fought with everything it had to keep what it had gained. That’s the way you make money, by squeezing it out of IT departments and corporate boards. Selling to the public? Putting on a happy face? That’s for amateurs.

Or so the thinking that drove Microsoft to be the wealthiest company in the world has gone, and still continues to this day.

But now, something dramatic has happened. Steve Ballmer was forced into retirement, in the face of activist shareholders that are demanding that Microsoft pay attention to consumers. And it’s finding itself fighting perhaps for its very life based not on winning in the board room, but on selling enough phones to win on the slimmest of margins. It found itself having to buy Nokia’s phones business, not to copy Apple’s business model, but to keep the damn thing from going under while it learns how to put on a happy face. Microsoft is faced, for the first time ever, with the self-realization that it is a consumer company, after all.

Microsoft is a strong and powerful company. It knows how to make software, it knows how to put together deals, and it knows how to win. For sure, it hasn’t quite figured out how to apply those traits to the consumer space, but given the right new CEO, some voices on the Board (including a fed up Bill Gates) who are demanding action, and indeed a market that is quickly passing it by, the sleeping giant may be awakening.

What Microsoft needs to be more than a copy of either Apple or Google, is a new, faster, consumer oriented version of itself. In some significant ways, that’s happening right before our eyes. And if it doesn’t, then copying Apple or Google isn’t going to help, anyway.

Posted September 5th, 2013 at 10:59 pm
Category: Featured, Opinion
Tags: Apple, Google, Microsoft, Nokia
  • http://www.timacheson.com/ Tim Acheson

    I’ve long suspected that Paul may have an arrangement with Google. (I tweeted with him about this on 22 May.) Although he presents himself as a source for MS news, even an MS fan. However, a graph of either contextual analysis or sentiment in his tweets and articles reveals a clear and sudden and marked change. I’ve been analysing certain pundits to test theories about embedded reporting in the industry, and corporate propaganda models, as we as general trends in reported opinion.

    Very suddenly, out of the blue, strongly anti-Microsoft and pro-Google tweets and articles started being included. And sometimes anti-Apple, but only on fronts where it competes directly with Google.

    He’s like a trojan horse in the Microsoft news feeds. The enemy within.

    • http://gregsedwards.wordpress.com/ Greg Edwards

      Nah Tim, I follow Paul pretty closely, and he’s no Google shill. Let’s put it this way; I’d leave him alone with my wife, kids, and Windows Server any day. ;)
      I don’t think that being a fan and being critical are mutually exclusive. I love Microsoft and go to great lengths to exclusively use their stuff whenever possible, and at the same time, I think they’ve made (and continue to make) some pretty beetle-headed moves, especially in the consumer space. And sometimes an organization like Microsoft can come up with a great solution and throw their heart & soul (not to mention a lot of dollars) at a problem, and still lose the battle…just because of mindshare. The best technology isn’t always the one that wins. It sucks, but it happens all the time.
      I think Paul is just someone watching something he cares about deeply and worried that they’re making bad choices. He’s playing armchair quarterback like the rest of us, and his articles sometime reflect that frustration.

      • Ray Wall

        I agree Greg. I follow Paul very closely, too. I respect his opinions greatly because he tells it how it is – good, bad or ugly. That makes his opinions a lot more credible to me. But I do agree with Kip’s oped too. Both Kip and Paul make very valid points. Points made by both are made out of concern and frustration for a company they both like and want to see succeed.

  • http://www.timacheson.com/ Tim Acheson

    I’ve long suspected that Paul may have an arrangement with Google. (I tweeted with him about this on 22 May.) Although he presents himself as a source for MS news, even an MS fan. However, a graph of either contextual analysis or sentiment in his tweets and articles reveals a clear and sudden and marked change. I’ve been analysing certain pundits to test theories about embedded reporting in the industry, and corporate propaganda models, as we as general trends in reported opinion.

    Very suddenly, out of the blue, strongly anti-Microsoft and pro-Google tweets and articles started being included. And sometimes anti-Apple, but only on fronts where it competes directly with Google.

    He’s like a trojan horse in the Microsoft news feeds. The enemy within.

    • http://gregsedwards.wordpress.com/ Greg Edwards

      Nah Tim, I follow Paul pretty closely, and he’s no Google shill. Let’s put it this way; I’d leave him alone with my wife, kids, and Windows Server any day. ;)

      I don’t think that being a fan and being critical are mutually exclusive. I love Microsoft and go to great lengths to exclusively use their stuff whenever possible, and at the same time, I think they’ve made (and continue to make) some pretty beetle-headed moves, especially in the consumer space. And sometimes an organization like Microsoft can come up with a great solution and throw their heart & soul (not to mention a lot of dollars) at a problem, and still lose the battle…just because of mindshare. The best technology isn’t always the one that wins. It sucks, but it happens all the time.

      I think Paul is just someone watching something he cares about deeply and worried that they’re making bad choices. He’s playing armchair quarterback like the rest of us, and his articles sometime reflect that frustration.

      • Ray Wall

        I agree Greg. I follow Paul very closely, too. I respect his opinions greatly because he tells it how it is – good, bad or ugly. That makes his opinions a lot more credible to me. But I do agree with Kip’s oped too. Both Kip and Paul make very valid points. Points made by both are made out of concern and frustration for a company they both like and want to see succeed.

    • _KevinWheeler

      Tim,
      You are spot on. I have noticed the same thing. A lot of started when Ed Bott and others got early review units of the Surface RT and he didn’t. He cried like a baby on Windows Weekly. I to have challenged him about this as rescently as yesterday on twitter about the Nokia purchase. Check out my twitter post and you will see.

      • http://www.timacheson.com/ Tim Acheson

        Paul seems to have exceptionally sour grapes about not getting freebies. It’s a sad time for tech reporting, when the leading influencers naturally assume that they should be getting something in return — not just for generating favourable opinions on their pet company, but also for refraining from criticism and attacking rival companies.

        I tweet about this occasionally myself:

        https://twitter.com/timacheson/status/376648124380368896

        Apple and Google cultivate string embedder reporter relationships with opinion leaders, rewarding them with perks, exclusives, free travel and hotels, etc. I’ve been telling MS to do this for years, but always get the response that it would raise ethical problems. This stance deserves credit, but this is war and if everybody’s doing it Microsoft is at a severe disadvantage by trying to play fair.

      • http://www.timacheson.com/ Tim Acheson

        If Paul Thurrott is a wannabe embedded reporter with sour grapes as many people believe, it would be a real shame.

        http://www.wpcentral.com/comment/211153#comment-211153

        He pre-moderates his comments so it’s impossible to raise these topics on his website. I’ve posted comments politely challenging his facts and logic, but none were ever published.

        • _KevinWheeler

          Tim, Yeah I remember that article. I’m in that thread as wheelerk. :-) Also, I just followed you on twitter as well. I have been struggling over whether to dump windows weekly or not. Its become unbearable. And have you noticed how they bring up topics that they really don’t now much about. And for a person who has written a book about the Secrets of Windows Phone, he actually knows very little about it. Leo feeds off of their negative MSFT attacks. Its just appalling and yet people defend their actions. I actually enjoyed the episode that Ed Bott was on. He actually looks things with a level head.

          • http://www.timacheson.com/ Tim Acheson

            Thanks for the follow. Feel free to retweet my last tweet at Paul. I’ve been trying for years to get answers. When people post genuine questions or criticism on his own website, the comment is never published.

  • http://www.timacheson.com/ Tim Acheson

    Microsoft does not need to copy anyone. It’s a thriving and diverse business, constantly innovating, which has enjoyed an awesome rennaisance over the past half decade. It does need to be aware of competition, and listen to critics — as it absolutely has done.

    After well over a decade of both Apple and Google declaring all out war against Microsoft — usually coordinated in a malignant ununholy alliance — Microsoft remains market leader in all of its core markets, and is pushing hard into markets where Apple and Google historically have dominated. Mac has barely scraped past 5% market share against Windows.

    Google and Apple are overrated, thanks in no small measure to their own propaganda operations, and above all because mobile is over-hyped.

    What’s Apple’s great innovation since iOS?

    What are Google’s in-house innovations for the real world since search? Other people’s innovations,.bought using the cash stockpile from search and tax evasion, do not count.

    • http://www.LiveSide.net Kip Kniskern – LiveSide.net

      Other than that, Mrs. Lincoln, how was the play?
      Sorry but the gig’s up. Ballmer is out, ValueAct is not only on the Board but has support amongst shareholders, and while thriving revenues do count, ignoring the stock price while driving revenues just isn’t going to cut it anymore. Microsoft has to face up to the fact that it’s been playing the wrong game.

      • http://www.timacheson.com/ Tim Acheson

        No way has MS been playing the wrong game. It does need to play other games, and is doing so.

        Apple’s share price is a volatile train wreck. Apple and iOS are overrated and overvalued.

  • http://www.timacheson.com/ Tim Acheson

    Microsoft does not need to copy anyone. It’s a thriving and diverse business, constantly innovating, which has enjoyed an awesome rennaisance over the past half decade. It does need to be aware of competition, and listen to critics — as it absolutely has done.

    After well over a decade of both Apple and Google declaring all out war against Microsoft — usually coordinated in a malignant ununholy alliance — Microsoft remains market leader in all of its core markets, and is pushing hard into markets where Apple and Google historically have dominated. Mac has barely scraped past 5% market share against Windows.

    Google and Apple are overrated, thanks in no small measure to their own propaganda operations, and above all because mobile is over-hyped.

    What’s Apple’s great innovation since iOS?

    What are Google’s in-house innovations for the real world since search? Other people’s innovations,.bought using the cash stockpile from search and tax evasion, do not count.

  • http://www.timacheson.com/ Tim Acheson

    Microsoft does not need to copy anyone. It’s a thriving and diverse business, constantly innovating, which has enjoyed an awesome rennaisance over the past half decade. It does need to be aware of competition, and listen to critics — as it absolutely has done.

    After well over a decade of both Apple and Google declaring all out war against Microsoft — usually coordinated in a malignant ununholy alliance — Microsoft remains market leader in all of its core markets, and is pushing hard into markets where Apple and Google historically have dominated. Mac has barely scraped past 5% market share against Windows.

    Google and Apple are overrated, thanks in no small measure to their own propaganda operations, and above all because mobile is over-hyped.

    What’s Apple’s great innovation since iOS?

    What are Google’s in-house innovations for the real world since search? Other people’s innovations,.bought using the cash stockpile from search and tax evasion, do not count.

    • http://www.LiveSide.net Kip Kniskern – LiveSide.net

      Other than that, Mrs. Lincoln, how was the play?
      Sorry but the gig’s up. Ballmer is out, ValueAct is not only on the Board but has support amongst shareholders, and while thriving revenues do count, ignoring the stock price while driving revenues just isn’t going to cut it anymore. Microsoft has to face up to the fact that it’s been playing the wrong game.

      • http://www.timacheson.com/ Tim Acheson

        No way has MS been playing the wrong game. It does need to play other games, and is doing so.

        Apple’s share price is a volatile train wreck. Apple and iOS are overrated and overvalued.

  • http://www.timacheson.com/ Tim Acheson

    “there hasn’t been a major new Windows desktop app in years”

    Seriously? Apart from Dropbox, Chrome, Spotify, all the major game titles, new versions of every existing major app that matters, etc, etc.

    There are countless less major new apps every year.

    • Andy D

      I think he means a MS made one.

      • http://www.timacheson.com/ Tim Acheson

        I assume he meant MS but they have released major apps too, and major updates to major apps too. They own most of the apps that matter on desktop. They own desktop. Paul’s ignorance of the facts and double-standards betray him.

        What was the last major app released by Apple on desktop? How about Google?

        • http://gregsedwards.wordpress.com/ Greg Edwards

          I’m absolutely in agreement with the sentiment about the diminishing relevance of “classic” applications and the desktop. It’s not about Microsoft, Apple, or Google. It’s not about whether developers are still developing or updating desktop applications but about the desktop (i.e., Win32) as a platform…as an institution.

          You say Microsoft owns the desktop. You ask what was the last major app released by Apple or Google on desktop. That’s the point. They’ve moved on to the next big thing. Microsoft dominates a platform that’s quickly losing relevance.

          Most people make the mistake of looking at the current ecosystem and saying that touch-first mobile apps are just kids’ toys, fun little curiosities and games, good for light consumption maybe, but not for any real work. For real production of content, you need full-featured apps that run on the desktop and work with a mouse and keyboard. I’ll remind you that people used to say the same thing about DOS and Windows. WordPerfect was on DOS. dBase was on DOS. Line-of-business software ran in DOS. Windows was for doodling in Paint, playing Solitaire, and surfing the Web. But the tide shifted pretty quickly, didn’t it?
          A new platform comes along, it offers some advantage over the status quo, it gets a few key apps, people really get invested in it, and it gains a momentum that increases exponentially. Increasingly people don’t want to fiddle with the nuances of file systems, device drivers, registry keys, screens full of icons, and settings that are tied to one machine. They want to throw a lightweight app onto a device that connects to a web-based service and start using it. And everything just “works.” Their stuff is there. Like magic.

          Like it or not, we’re in the midst of a transition away from the desktop to mobile-style apps, just like 20 years ago we were in the midst of a transition away from DOS to Windows. The key difference is that this time, Microsoft doesn’t own the next platform. And that’s what scares the hell out of folks like Paul.

  • http://www.timacheson.com/ Tim Acheson

    “there hasn’t been a major new Windows desktop app in years”

    Seriously? Apart from Dropbox, Chrome, Spotify, all the major game titles, new versions of every existing major app that matters, etc, etc.

    There are countless less major new apps every year.

    • Andy D

      I think he means a MS made one.

      • http://www.timacheson.com/ Tim Acheson

        I assume he meant MS but they have released major apps too, and major updates to major apps too. They own most of the apps that matter on desktop. They own desktop. Paul’s ignorance of the facts and double-standards betray him.

        What was the last major app released by Apple on desktop? How about Google?

        • http://gregsedwards.wordpress.com/ Greg Edwards

          I’m absolutely in agreement with the sentiment about the diminishing relevance of “classic” applications and the desktop. It’s not about Microsoft, Apple, or Google. It’s not about whether developers are still developing or updating desktop applications but about the desktop (i.e., Win32) as a platform…as an institution.

          You say Microsoft owns the desktop. You ask what was the last major app released by Apple or Google on desktop. That’s the point. They’ve moved on to the next big thing. Microsoft dominates a platform that’s quickly losing relevance.

          Most people make the mistake of looking at the current ecosystem and saying that touch-first mobile apps are just kids’ toys, fun little curiosities and games, good for light consumption maybe, but not for any real work. For real production of content, you need full-featured apps that run on the desktop and work with a mouse and keyboard. I’ll remind you that people used to say the same thing about DOS and Windows. WordPerfect was on DOS. dBase was on DOS. Line-of-business software ran in DOS. Windows was for doodling in Paint, playing Solitaire, and surfing the Web. But the tide shifted pretty quickly, didn’t it?
          A new platform comes along, it offers some advantage over the status quo, it gets a few key apps, people really get invested in it, and it gains a momentum that increases exponentially. Increasingly people don’t want to fiddle with the nuances of file systems, device drivers, registry keys, screens full of icons, and settings that are tied to one machine. They want to throw a lightweight app onto a device that connects to a web-based service and start using it. And everything just “works.” Their stuff is there. Like magic.

          Like it or not, we’re in the midst of a transition away from the desktop to mobile-style apps, just like 20 years ago we were in the midst of a transition away from DOS to Windows. The key difference is that this time, Microsoft doesn’t own the next platform. And that’s what scares the hell out of folks like Paul.

          • http://www.timacheson.com/ Tim Acheson

            It’s not “losing relevance”.

            The slowing sales of desktop units merely reflects the top end of the saturation curve where growth becomes exponentially more difficult.

  • Andy D

    I agree that they need to stop copying and start innovating and making their own unique devices and software. A perfect example of this is the Zune HD: sure, it was meant to compete with the iPod Touch, but they made it different. A pretty much pure music/audio/video player that wasn’t bogged down by the 25 bazillion apps. Not to mention being a handheld HD Radio, of which I still haven’t seen another appear.
    As to iTunes being one of the most popular pieces of software out there: yeah, it is, but only because it’s required for the average Joe to use their iDevice. It’s pretty much universally known as a piece of crap software, but when there aren’t any easy alternatives, people are stuck with it.

  • Andy D

    I agree that they need to stop copying and start innovating and making their own unique devices and software. A perfect example of this is the Zune HD: sure, it was meant to compete with the iPod Touch, but they made it different. A pretty much pure music/audio/video player that wasn’t bogged down by the 25 bazillion apps. Not to mention being a handheld HD Radio, of which I still haven’t seen another appear.
    As to iTunes being one of the most popular pieces of software out there: yeah, it is, but only because it’s required for the average Joe to use their iDevice. It’s pretty much universally known as a piece of crap software, but when there aren’t any easy alternatives, people are stuck with it.

  • http://www.timacheson.com/ Tim Acheson

    Let’s get real. Google makes its money from adverts. Hardly the holy grail of the industry, and in fact seriously threatened by increasing public awareness of privacy.

    If Paul sincerely believes that this is the ultimate business model, it says more about him than it does about Microsoft.

    • http://cid-280a1538334a1cb9.profile.live.com/ Seika

      Rather than the public, ultimately it’s the financial directors that should be made aware that those ads spending is becoming ineffective and most are getting blocked anyway so they should stop the budget and tell the marketing to find other more effective way :D

      It’s their money after all, not the consumer (read: Google’s commodity). Marketing will try argue that their spending is justified.

      Sadly, one thing Google has mostly succeed is to re-educate consumers to pay no attention to IP and just side with whoever spoonfeed them with new blingy free toys. Anyone who stand between them and their fix for whatever reason suddenly become despicable public enemy.

    • http://gregsedwards.wordpress.com/ Greg Edwards

      Good point about Google being a wolf in sheep’s clothing. I’ve previously said more or less the same thing, that Google is an advertising company that merely uses technology to place their ads. But it’s working for them. They’re wildly successful, in part because even though they’re sloppy, they get sh*t done. Microsoft prefers to tinker until it’s just right. It’s a pure intent that reflects the skill of a dedicated craftsman, but it doesn’t work in the given economy.

      It reminds of the joke about the Microsoft engineer having sex with his wife. The punch line is how the he spends all night telling her how good its going to be when she finally gets it.

      In the end, a poorly implemented product is worth more than a good idea.

  • http://www.timacheson.com/ Tim Acheson

    Let’s get real. Google makes its money from adverts. Hardly the holy grail of the industry, and in fact seriously threatened by increasing public awareness of privacy.

    If Paul sincerely believes that this is the ultimate business model, it says more about him than it does about Microsoft.

    • http://cid-280a1538334a1cb9.profile.live.com/ Seika

      Rather than the public, ultimately it’s the financial directors that should be made aware that those ads spending is becoming ineffective and most are getting blocked anyway so they should stop the budget and tell the marketing to find other more effective way :D

      It’s their money after all, not the consumer (read: Google’s commodity). Marketing will try argue that their spending is justified.

      Sadly, one thing Google has mostly succeed is to re-educate consumers to pay no attention to IP and just side with whoever spoonfeed them with new blingy free toys. Anyone who stand between them and their fix for whatever reason suddenly become despicable public enemy.

    • http://gregsedwards.wordpress.com/ Greg Edwards

      Good point about Google being a wolf in sheep’s clothing. I’ve previously said more or less the same thing, that Google is an advertising company that merely uses technology to place their ads. But it’s working for them. They’re wildly successful, in part because even though they’re sloppy, they get sh*t done. Microsoft prefers to tinker until it’s just right. It’s a pure intent that reflects the skill of a dedicated craftsman, but it doesn’t work in the given economy.

      It reminds of the joke about the Microsoft engineer having sex with his wife. The punch line is how the he spends all night telling her how good its going to be when she finally gets it.

      In the end, a poorly implemented product is worth more than a good idea.

  • http://gregsedwards.wordpress.com/ Greg Edwards

    I credit Kip with writing a well-reasoned rebuttal that clarifies some of the assertions that Android is really “free” and adding some substance to Thurrott’s thesis that the desktop is dead. Good read, sir. And this is why I keep coming back to LiveSide.

  • http://gregsedwards.wordpress.com/ Greg Edwards

    I credit Kip with writing a well-reasoned rebuttal that clarifies some of the assertions that Android is really “free” and adding some substance to Thurrott’s thesis that the desktop is dead. Good read, sir. And this is why I keep coming back to LiveSide.

  • _KevinWheeler

    Nice article Kip. Finally someone calls Paul on his shenanigans and temper tantrums. He is the ultimate flip flop. I believe this purchase of Nokia is a sign that the “Sleeping Giant” has already awakened. Hulk Smash!!!! Keep up the good work.

  • _KevinWheeler

    Nice article Kip. Finally someone calls Paul on his shenanigans and temper tantrums. He is the ultimate flip flop. I believe this purchase of Nokia is a sign that the “Sleeping Giant” has already awakened. Hulk Smash!!!! Keep up the good work.

  • _KevinWheeler

    Tim,
    You are spot on. I have noticed the same thing. A lot of started when Ed Bott and others got early review units of the Surface RT and he didn’t. He cried like a baby on Windows Weekly. I to have challenged him about this as rescently as yesterday on twitter about the Nokia purchase. Check out my twitter post and you will see.

  • http://www.timacheson.com/ Tim Acheson

    Paul seems to have exceptionally sour grapes about not getting freebies. It’s a sad time for tech reporting, when the leading influencers naturally assume that they should be getting something in return — not just for generating favourable opinions on their pet company, but also for refraining from criticism and attacking rival companies.

    I tweet about this occasionally myself:

    https://twitter.com/timacheson/status/376648124380368896

    Apple and Google cultivate string embedder reporter relationships with opinion leaders, rewarding them with perks, exclusives, free travel and hotels, etc. I’ve been telling MS to do this for years, but always get the response that it would raise ethical problems. This stance deserves credit, but this is war and if everybody’s doing it Microsoft is at a severe disadvantage by trying to play fair.

  • http://www.timacheson.com/ Tim Acheson

    If Paul Thurrott is a wannabe embedded reporter with sour grapes as many people believe, it would be a real shame.

    http://www.wpcentral.com/comment/211153#comment-211153

    He pre-moderates his comments so it’s impossible to raise these topics on his website. I’ve posted comments politely challenging his facts and logic, but none were ever published.

  • http://www.timacheson.com/ Tim Acheson

    It’s not “losing relevance”.

    The slowing sales of desktop units merely reflects the top end of the saturation curve where growth becomes exponentially more difficult.

  • _KevinWheeler

    Tim, Yeah I remember that article. I’m in that thread as wheelerk. :-) Also, I just followed you on twitter as well. I have been struggling over whether to dump windows weekly or not. Its become unbearable. And have you noticed how they bring up topics that they really don’t now much about. And for a person who has written a book about the Secrets of Windows Phone, he actually knows very little about it. Leo feeds off of their negative MSFT attacks. Its just appalling and yet people defend their actions. I actually enjoyed the episode that Ed Bott was on. He actually looks things with a level head.

  • http://www.timacheson.com/ Tim Acheson

    Thanks for the follow. Feel free to retweet my last tweet at Paul. I’ve been trying for years to get answers. When people post genuine questions or criticism on his own website, the comment is never published.