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CNET News.com: Sun buys Microsoft Office competitor

Aug 20, 1999, 21:32 (7 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Stephen Shankland)

"Sun Microsystems is finalizing a deal to buy Star Division, a maker of a software suite similar to Microsoft Office, and it appears that it is off on a second attempt for desktop glory.

A deal to purchase Star Division was signed August 11, and an announcement is expected August 31, sources familiar with the plan said. Star Division makes two types of its StarOffice software, one type that runs on Linux, Solaris, Windows, and Mac OS, and the other, a thin client version of the software that runs on Java-enabled devices."

"...acquisition of the German company would put Sun into more direct competition with longtime foe Microsoft. Microsoft's office suite is dominant on computers running Windows and Mac OS, whereas Sun's strength has been not with end-user software but with server hardware and software."

"On September 8, Sun is slated to unveil a new line of 'thin client' desktops which are similar but more robust than its ill-fated Javastation, according to sources. Star Division's software would essentially give Sun the applications that would make these desktops more attractive and useful."

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