June 24, 2004 8:26 AM PDT

Thailand to get slimmed-down Windows

A slimmed-down version of Microsoft's Windows XP will be offered to novice computer users in Thailand beginning in September.

Windows XP Starter Edition will be offered as part of government-sponsored programs intended to provide consumers with more affordable computers. The software will cost 1,490 Thai baht, or roughly $36, according to news reports. Windows XP normally sells for several hundred dollars.

The new version will include Windows Explorer and Windows Media Player and other features included in the full versions of Windows XP. But it will also include some new features aimed at helping beginner computer users, Microsoft said.

The company didn't provide exact details of what the new version of Windows will include. A representative wasn't immediately available to comment.

Windows XP Starter Edition was created to enable Microsoft to participate in a low-cost PC program run by the the Thailand Ministry of Information and Communication Technology, or ICT, without adjusting its policy of charging the same price for Windows and Office, no matter where in the world they are sold.

Microsoft has come under increasing competitive pressure from open-source software such as Linux in developing countries, where the single-price policy makes Microsoft software too expensive for most. The Thai ICT PCs were originally available only with Linux. Linux PCs are seen as a threat to Windows partly because buyers are considered likely to replace the operating system with pirated copies of Windows.

Several Asian governments have recently embraced open-source software in an attempt to fix problems such as high software costs and wide-scale software piracy. The price of Microsoft software is often cited as the root of these problems.

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Mike - your reasoning is flawed
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ARTICLE QUOTE
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"Linux PCs are seen as a threat to Windows partly because buyers are considered likely to replace the operating system with pirated copies of Windows"
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Hey Mikey, what do you think is the bigger threat? If the user installs a pirate copy of Windows (from which Microsoft gets $0.00) -OR- if the user keeps Linux and never uses Windows again (from which Microsoft gets $0.00 AND a user partial to non-Microsoft software).

Don't play into the FUD, dipshit.
Posted by (60 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Mike - your reasoning is flawed
----------------------------
ARTICLE QUOTE
----------------------------
"Linux PCs are seen as a threat to Windows partly because buyers are considered likely to replace the operating system with pirated copies of Windows"
----------------------------

Hey Mikey, what do you think is the bigger threat? If the user installs a pirate copy of Windows (from which Microsoft gets $0.00) -OR- if the user keeps Linux and never uses Windows again (from which Microsoft gets $0.00 AND a user partial to non-Microsoft software).

Don't play into the FUD, dipshit.
Posted by (60 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Tell me again how much MS is losing to Piracy?
Gotta love articles like this. It just proves that MS is blowing hot air when they talk about how massive their losses are from pirates.
This crap that its a special version is just that crap. Its so when others make the same complaint I am about price MS can say its a "special" version. Ya right. Blow smoke up someone elses butt MS.
I can guarantee that if MS dropped the price to even double that of what they are selling these "special" copies for piracy would all but vanish overnight.

Beyond piracy I'm going to be highly interested in how this is going to impact MS at the negotiating tables with their customers. I'll bet cold hard cash this "deal" with Thailand will be brought up much to the dismay of MS. If they can offer Windows for $36 to them they should be able to do the same for us.
Posted by Jonathan (832 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Tell me again how much MS is losing to Piracy?
Gotta love articles like this. It just proves that MS is blowing hot air when they talk about how massive their losses are from pirates.
This crap that its a special version is just that crap. Its so when others make the same complaint I am about price MS can say its a "special" version. Ya right. Blow smoke up someone elses butt MS.
I can guarantee that if MS dropped the price to even double that of what they are selling these "special" copies for piracy would all but vanish overnight.

Beyond piracy I'm going to be highly interested in how this is going to impact MS at the negotiating tables with their customers. I'll bet cold hard cash this "deal" with Thailand will be brought up much to the dismay of MS. If they can offer Windows for $36 to them they should be able to do the same for us.
Posted by Jonathan (832 comments )
Reply Link Flag
OEM pricing vs retail pricing
It is misleading to compare the $36 price to the retail price of XP (several hundred dollars). The top 10 OEMs buy XP for about $50.
Posted by mini2mac (5 comments )
Reply Link Flag
OEM Pricing
I'm a small OEM (100 PC's a year, partime) and I buy XP home for $53.00 shipped in single copies to sustain my operation. I am wondering exactly what has been stripped out of the OS, considering how many times Mr Gates has claimed that all the windows components must be packaged together in order to work properly...Remember the US Anti-trust lawsuit?...Does this mean that the Thais will get a sub-standard product from Redmond?

Just Wondering.
Posted by (3 comments )
Link Flag
OEM pricing vs retail pricing
It is misleading to compare the $36 price to the retail price of XP (several hundred dollars). The top 10 OEMs buy XP for about $50.
Posted by mini2mac (5 comments )
Reply Link Flag
OEM Pricing
I'm a small OEM (100 PC's a year, partime) and I buy XP home for $53.00 shipped in single copies to sustain my operation. I am wondering exactly what has been stripped out of the OS, considering how many times Mr Gates has claimed that all the windows components must be packaged together in order to work properly...Remember the US Anti-trust lawsuit?...Does this mean that the Thais will get a sub-standard product from Redmond?

Just Wondering.
Posted by (3 comments )
Link Flag
 

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