"For Bill Veghte, Microsoft's future lies in devices that skirt
the traditional definition of a "beige box." Veghte, an 11-year
Microsoft veteran, has for the past year worked as vice president
of the embedded/appliance platform group, the unit responsible for
the Windows CE and Windows Embedded operating systems."
"[News.com:] When you look at the competitive
landscape, obviously you have different competitors, some of which
are charging, some of which are free, some of which are open
source, some of which are not. How do you assess that competitive
[Veghte:] ... If you look at Linux as a
platform, obviously Linux is still pretty adolescent in the tool
set that they provide. If you look at the size of something like
the Linux browser, it's very big and very bulky.
There's a tremendous amount of tinkering going on right now as
people say, "Hey, I've got a Linux kernel booting on a device." But
that's very different from creating a rich set of applications and
services and experiences on those devices. So for Linux, it's
about: Can the tool set mature? Can business models be strong. Can
there be a strong business model behind it? And can that deliver a
great applications and services platform?
The other question that people often (mention) is: "Well, Linux
is free." And of course the run- time license is one portion of the
overall cost of bringing a device to market. For example, there are
Linux companies out there that say the kernel and the memory
manager for free, but (add): "We're going to charge you for the
device management module. We're going to charge you for the browser
module." And by the time you add it all up, it's actually more
expensive (than Microsoft operating systems)."
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