I honestly think that what Microsoft wanted wasn't Skype's software or userbase, what they wanted was the long series of communications agreements that Skype's made with tier one providers around the world, and those agreements were loose enough to be leveraged by Microsoft. Because, let's be honest, Skype's software is just a gizmo, easily reproduced with dozens of packages out there. They don't hold any magic solutions that aren't available elsewhere. But what they did do was smooze and dine what they felt to be the most critical part of real time communication over the internet - the providers themselves.
And they got some pretty nifty sweetheart deals guarantying quality of service, something that'd cost Microsoft tons to try to reproduce themselves.
Why did Office take off and Word Perfect fail? Because Word Perfect kept putting kludges on their software to try to make it better, rather than going for the WYSIWYG interface that business wanted. Why did Alpha IV fail to Access? Because they decided that they could continue with a non-windows interface rather than adapt. Sure, FoxPro and Alpha IV and even DBASE were rocketships compared to Access, but required extensive learning to do the most basic of things, whereas Access excelled at just being easy. Lotus 1-2-3 bet business users wouldn't go for the fancier interface of Windows, and died.
Could someone come along and topple Microsoft? Absolutely. Will anyone? Probably not, but you never know. Firefox and Google Chrome are massive players in the browser market today, something that Netscape could have done, but they truthfully fell behind.
Anthropomorphizing Microsoft to make a person feel better just is foolish, and completely and utterly ignores the very rich history of computers and the massive amount of companies that made the home computer a must have device. And no, Microsoft didn't create the dot com bubble, that was done by all of us who looked at the Internet as being some magical goldmine that'll simply print money in unlimited quantities. Google came out on top because Excite decided to overload their pages to entice more investors, or AltaVista who decided to reduce the number of results, in the hope of making results more relevant, and instead made it outdated. AOL who decided to control how and what people did on the Internet and virtually cut their own throat as people simply went without their interface to the world. Sure, these companies still mostly exist, but are bit players today compared to the giants.
I'll give Yahoo some credit though, every time I think they're finally dead, they somehow manage to come up with some new idea and stay alive a little longer.
"Bad competition"? LOL. I guess when the Microsoft legal, PR and cutthroat monopolistic infrastructure machine successfully undermined and sabotaged those who dared innovate as undefended startups, one could refer to those many, many, MANY victims as "bad competition."
If, that is, one was an acid-drooling THING, rather than a human being.
Or a lawyer.
Almost everyone I know under 55 has an Xbox. Though I don’t do the gaming I used to, I still use it for DVDs, Netflix and now Hulu+. Thinking about the Kinect as well... When will it get a browser??? I am still waiting for it to carry Youtube...
IBM gave the first PC? No, not at all.
what are you smokin jack?
Not only did IBM make the first PC, THEY INVENTED THE NAME “PC”!
now sit down.
Home computing is not the only game in town. Microsoft has a HUGE advantage in businesses and organizations.
Microsoft provides the operating systems for millions of ATT UVerse set top boxes, as well as the ATT business and technical support systems. Multiply this kind of market infiltration across many large corporations and you get an idea of Microsoft’s strength.