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The Register: Newham Ditches IBM OSS Trial, But Goes to Extra Time with MS Price Talks

Jan 06, 2004, 18:00 (1 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by John Lettice)

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"Microsoft has emerged from the open source battle in Newham council with a couple of PR victories, but they could prove expensive in the long run. In December Newham, which is one of the leaders in local authority IT in the UK, pulled out of the Office of Government Commerce's open source trials, and has subsequently stated that sticking with Microsoft is its preferred route forward. But crucially, Newham has not yet agreed pricing with Microsoft UK, and there are signs that local authorities, and perhaps even the wider public sector, are beginning to coalesce around Newham.

"'We're aware that Microsoft won't do deals with individual organisations,' Newham head of ICT Ricard Steel told The Register. Newham has therefore come to a 'sort of arrangement' with other councils, and is working via the Society of IT Management, the professional body for local authority IT managers. There appears also to be a certain amount of liaison with the OGC, which is attempting to drive down software costs (with Microsoft as an obvious prime focus) for the whole of the UK public sector..."

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