Ballmer Is The Root Of All Evil

Update: I know that Google pays its way into Firefox, Safari, etc. but the relationship here is very different than that of MS and OEM.

I hate Steve Ballmer. When I met him, he was a total dick. I went to the CES keynote in 2000 (Bill Gates) and was in the reserved area seated close to him. I got up and went to talk to Masayoshi Son and Ballmer kept sneering and making odd comments. I wonder why he was so interested in our conversation that I was obviously trying to exclude him from.

Anyway, none of that matters. It’s just my personal perception of the man. What does matter is an announcement made during HIS keynote this year:

Bing will be the default search engine on
ALL HP computers shipping from now on.

Does this sound familiar? Is Microsoft not capable of innovating to the top? Do they have to strong arm everyone? There’s also Verizon forcing Bing on their users, crazy.

And the sad thing is, the other 800 lb. gorilla is making the same plays. Google is promoting the Nexus One on the single most trafficked piece of real estate on the web, Google’s front page. Is this right? I wonder how all Motorola and others feel about this. For some reason, this doesn’t feel dirty though. Probably because it doesn’t feel like anyone is being strong armed.

How do you feel about Microsoft’s strategy here? Let me know in the comments.

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