The big search engines are spending money like crazy these days. From the many new multi-billion dollar acquisitions taking place over the past several months, to the second $600 Million data centers under construction by Google.
According to the Globe and Mail, Microsoft has taken a step back and will now allow for third party search applications to be used in the new Windows Vista operating system.
Microsoft’s decision came a week before a government review of Microsoft’s 2002 antitrust settlement compliance demanding the use of such third party apps. Read more…
In a press release issued by Microsoft Tuesday, the announcement of the first commercially available surface computer was made.
Expected to be released late this year, Surface will first appear in places like Casinos and hotels.
“With Surface, we are creating more intuitive ways for people to interact with technology,” Ballmer said. “We see this as a multibillion dollar category, and we envision a time when surface computing technologies will be pervasive, from tabletops and counters to the hallway mirror. Surface is the first step in realizing that vision.”
Microsoft finally took the plunge today and announced the pending acquisition of advertising giant aQuantive based out of Seattle for a cool $6 billion; an eighty-five percent premium over the shares on Thursday.
Here are some great articles on the subject:
This week the search world has been rampant with news of buyouts and related rumors. Here is a snapshot of the events of interest:
- The Dow Jones is up for sale and rumors started by a connected analyst state that Google may be interested. I say “don’t hold your breath.” This is likely a tall tale. Here is another article from Bloomberg: “Dow Jones Holders Say Murdoch Bid May Trigger Auction (Update4)” Read more…
Reputable sources say Microsoft has reopened negotiations with Yahoo to purchase the company or work with it in some way. Last year the same talks were going on but Yahoo’s Terry Semel said his “impartial advice to Microsoft is that you have no chance,” Mr Semel said. “The search business has been formed.” The talks ceased and I was not expecting them to restart so soon.
The Wall Street Journal estimates Yahoo’s value at 50 billion… is Microsoft really that eager? Apparently they just might be and it is likely a direct cause of their thwarted attempt to secure DoubleClick before Google did. Tired of being a follower I expect Microsoft will be making some very tempting offers to Semel this time around.
Okay, now it is time for what is likely to get a few people charged up. “YES PLEASE” is my way of saying that I hope the merger goes ahead because it will provide some shake up in the search engines – something I feel is much needed. It also helps that I have very little reason to believe Microsoft will add value to Yahoo which will hopefully will create a void for a newcomer.
What is your thought on this? Would you be all for a merger or against?
It is interesting that a few years after Google released Google Desktop, Microsoft has come forward to release their own version of Desktop search.
As part of the MSN Search Toolbar Suite introduced earlier this year, the final version of MSN Desktop was released just this past Monday.
Yahoo and AOL also have their versions of Desktop search in the works; interesting considering an effective desktop search feature should be something that is automatically integrated into an operating system. The new Windows Vista already has Windows Desktop Search integrated out of the box, but for those looking to try it on your pre-Vista version of Windows you can find the download, along with more details on Microsoft’s site.
This rant by Thomas Claburn at Information Week titled “Dear Microsoft: Enough With the Interactive TV” is funny and very well written. Also I agree with it totally. Enjoy!
My favorite excerpt is “TV needs interactivity like paintings need flavoring”…”Imagine all those people in the Louvre licking the Mona Lisa. It’s not very appealing.” PERFECT!
Kudos on the great rant Thomas!