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Microsoft Develops XP 'Light' for Thailand

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  • by Snowspinner (627098) * <philsand AT ufl DOT edu> on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:18PM (#8221155) Homepage
    It's possible to wring even less functionality out of Windows XP?

    Revolutionary!
    • by Mr Guy (547690) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:19PM (#8221161) Journal
      Sure this one is just a splash screen and a blue screen, used interchangeably.
      • by pe1rxq (141710) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:22PM (#8221175) Homepage Journal
        You forget the teletubby landscape you get between those two....
        Or is that the part that is cut out?

        Jeroen
      • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:22PM (#8221177)
        Oh, so they've relabled WindowsME as XP lite then?
      • by bad_fx (493443) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:23PM (#8221184) Journal
        Sure this one is just a splash screen and a blue screen, used interchangeably.

        ...Uhhh... So what're they changing...?
        • They are paying developers more money to cripple XP so they can sell it for less. Only a multi-billion dollar monopoly can get away with such illogical and rediculous actions.
          • by Erwos (553607) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @11:29PM (#8222673)
            I'm not sure whether you were ranting or being ignorant, so I'll assume someone else is ignorant and needs me to say the following:

            This is done all the time. Take, for instance, the Quadro line of cards by nVidia. You are buying an intentionally crippled card everytime you buy a GeforceFX. Same hardware, sans a couple switched transistors and a slightly modified BIOS. In other words, they made the Quadro, and then crippled it to be the GeForce.

            It's certainly not a tactic that only Microsoft employs. Indeed, most firms that sell both to the "individual consumer" and businesses do it. Singling out Microsoft as an evil corporation because they're employing intelligent (and in this case, non-monopolistic) business practices is stupid.

            Basic economics. Literally, they taught it at the very lowest level economics course at my school.

            -Erwos
            • by Dashing Leech (688077) on Monday February 09, 2004 @01:41AM (#8223153)
              Basic economics. Literally, they taught it at the very lowest level economics course at my school.

              Unfortunately, you left out the explanation of the economics. I've been curious about this for some time. Let me give it a shot, and tell me if I'm wrong.

              Basically, there are two ways to make profit. If you price your product cheap (small profit margin), you don't make as much per unit but you'll probably get more sales. If you price it expensive (large profit margin) you make more per unit but don't likely sell as many. The "crippled version" approach takes advantage of both by using two markets: inexpensive vs better quality/features.

              The unintuitive part is how can they sell the same product, with extra work put in to cripple it, at a lower price. Why not just leave it uncrippled and sell for the low price? The answer is that the crippled version is partially subsidized by the expensive version. You'd lose all of the bigger profit from the expensive version (since there wouldn't be one), so you'd have to sell a lot more at the cheaper price to make up for it. Having high quality at a low price will probably give you more sales, but perhaps not enough to make up the difference, especially because they are two different markets with different customers.

              Looking at it another way, it makes sense to have products for both markets (cheap vs quality). If you didn't use the "cripple" approach, you'd actually have to design and build two different products. Using the "cripple" approach, you only have to design and build one system. The extra cost to cripple it is far lower than the cost of designing and building a second product. This reasoning makes more sense when the design and labour costs are high relative to the cost of components (raw materials). Software is certainly a case where raw materials are cheap, most of the expense is in the development.

              Is this generally correct? Or am I missing something?

              • by zangdesign (462534) on Monday February 09, 2004 @02:21AM (#8223303) Journal
                The "extra cost" actually becomes a slight savings, if the product is designed correctly. Consider: in the instance of two separate products, designed separately, with higher and lower functionality respectively, you require two different assembly lines, with two different approaches to creating two different products.

                With the crippled version and the non-cripple version, you still require two assembly lines, but they are duplicates for most of the line, and perhaps require only removal of one or two positions to create the cripple versions of your hardware. You save time and money by creating one assembly line and effectively duplicating it for the lesser (or perhaps the greater) version.

                You can even do it with one assembly line and some sort of selector programming where every fifth product is the higher level product (assuming it has one-fifth of the sales).

                So you save some money on the manufacturing side. You also save money on the R&D side by creating two cards with only minor differences vs. creating two completely different cards.

                It's pretty much the same as producing a car with a tape deck vs. cd player. The research is much the same, but the tape deck fits in the same slot as the CD player, and any room you would have used for the automatic changer is just extra space.
    • by ramzak2k (596734) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:24PM (#8221189)
      I would like to get my hands on one of these if it does not include all the applications i dont need - windows messenger , internet explorer, Outlook express. Just the basic UI. I can customize it the way i need. Lesser the functionality, more secure the box will be.
      • by jay-oh-eee! (750468) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:41PM (#8221311) Homepage
        It's funny, people complain about how MS forces you to install everything (IE, Outlook, etc) and call in "anti-competitive" and when they offer it somewhere with these things stripped out it's called "crippled". There's no winning the article poster or OP, it seems.
        • by dorsey (119963) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:48PM (#8221362)
          You're not serious, right? Just because they're forcing a different option doesn't mean that they aren't still forcing the choice.
          • You're not serious, right? Just because they're forcing a different option doesn't mean that they aren't still forcing the choice.

            I'm serious exactly because they're not "enforcing a different option", they're enforcing nothing -- they're taking stuff out, not replacing it with something else.

            Since WMP, for example, isn't replace with WMP-lite.
        • by Pharmboy (216950) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:50PM (#8221381) Journal
          Actually, I am guessing the "crippled" comment was more of a troll for the original author. Its a sure way to get comments, but then again, thats not a problem on /.

          I agree with the other posts, I wouldn't call this crippled if it runs the apps, I would call it streamlined. I would be interested in a copy, if they "crippled" out the media players and such. Im sure it still has IE tho, since they wont let you use windowsupdate with Firebird.
        • by Valdrax (32670) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @08:08PM (#8221490)
          None of the articles that I've read about this have said what functionality they're taking out of the system. For all we know, all the apps that we complain about (i.e. Explorer, Outlook, and Media Player) will be in the OS and other non-downloadable, core/system functionality will be removed (e.g. VPN, IPv6, and other networking protocols) or something else vexing but replaceable with third-party software.

          In other words, it's perfectly possible that it will be both "anti-competitive" AND crippled.
      • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:41PM (#8221314)
        I would like to get my hands on one of these if it does not include all the applications i dont need - windows messenger , internet explorer, Outlook express. Just the basic UI. I can customize it the way i need. Lesser the functionality, more secure the box will be.

        It sounds like you want windows XP embedded. For the embedded market, MS lets you pick & choose which parts of the OS you want.

        Strangely enough, MS also says that this is completely impossible for the regular version, and that IE cannot be separated from the OS.
    • How about releasing a Thai language only version. I only know one person who could use a Thai version in the us. MS could produce a version of XP that only supported languages of emerging markets.
  • by Phosphor3k (542747) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:19PM (#8221158)
    Sounds like an improvement. Thats about three steps less crippled than my version, and cheaper to boot!
  • by frovingslosh (582462) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:20PM (#8221167)
    slightly crippled version of Windows XP

    Boy, how can I buy this. I would much rather have a slightly crippled version rather than the massively crippled version that Microsoft supplied my OEM for use with my notebook.

  • But Wait... (Score:5, Funny)

    by Mr. Fusion (235351) * on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:20PM (#8221168)
    Didn't they already released Windows XP Home?

    -Mr. Fusion
    • by UnknowingFool (672806) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @08:05PM (#8221473)
      No, as per MS standard naming conventions:

      X = ascii(88)
      P = ascii(80)

      So in MS logic, we will have to substract 11 from both letters because 11 is binary for 3 and this is the third version of XP.

      ascii (88-11) = ascii(77) = M
      ascii (80-11) = ascii(69) = E

      Hence, this version will be known as Windows ME.

      . . .

      How apropos.

  • by GonzoDave (743486) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:21PM (#8221174)
    1.Release product in piracy capital of the world
    2.?????
    3.Profit!
  • How to have both... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Foolhardy (664051) <[moc.liamg] [ta] [23htimsc]> on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:22PM (#8221179)
    Microsoft is notorious for bundling things to cause lock-in.
    How are they going to balance that with creating a light version of XP?
    • Sounds like the last line of the article covered that. They're going to provide a "clear upgrade path" to XP Home and Pro. Sure, "we clear your bank account and you get to upgrade."
  • why do it? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by monadicIO (602882) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:23PM (#8221183)
    The article says "
    because of the complexity of an operating system, reducing functionality was not a simple process and every modification would have to be thoroughly tested.
    So why would it make sense to spend more money in making these reductions? Why not just give the standard package? I'm missing something here.
    • Re:why do it? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by s20451 (410424) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:28PM (#8221220) Journal
      Am I the only one who thinks this is to keep Linux and other free operating systems out of third world countries? In that sense it would be a strategic move.

      Looks like Microsoft is finally listening to their poorer customers.
    • Re:why do it? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by DrEldarion (114072) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:29PM (#8221228)
      So why would it make sense to spend more money in making these reductions? Why not just give the standard package? I'm missing something here

      Very simple.

      User buys XP Lite, uses it for a while, and then decides he needs all the functionality. User then buys XP Home/Pro.

      They have now bought two copies of the OS. Money++ for Microsoft.
    • Re:why do it? (Score:3, Insightful)

      by 1u3hr (530656)
      So why would it make sense to spend more money in making these reductions? Why not just give the standard package? I'm missing something here.

      Because if the standard package was much cheaper in Thailand there'd be massive pressure from other customers to get the same price, and lots of grey-market trade. Somehow crippling it, maybe making only Thai system menus avaiable (currently I believe all language versions use the same code and most of the same files), for instance, would make this a different produ

  • This is quite the desperate attempt by MS to obtain a larger share of the world OS market. Hopefully those in Bangkok will learn that there's an un-crippled, stable, fast operating system [linux.org] out there already, and it's FREE.
    • Actually, I think this isn't so much a move against Linux as it is an attempt to stem piracy, which is huge in Thailand. If Windows is available at relatively low cost, more people will buy legal copies of it. Right now, it's just the pirated version that remains the practical choice for the vast majority.

      While Thai-language Linux may be relatively well developed, all of the international versions of Windows are quite well done and have been for a while now. While features alone may allow for a user to sw
  • Thailand... (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:24PM (#8221192)

    ...where the ILoveYou worm was named MeLoveYouLongTime

  • by no longer myself (741142) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:24PM (#8221195)
    Oh come on... With a headline like this, it's just too easy.

    Slightly Crippled?
    Yeah, it comes pre-installed with 14 viruses.

    Slightly Crippled?
    It's product activation is 30 days expired.

    Slightly Crippled?
    It's the latest version.

    Slightly Crippled?
    They wrote it using .NET

    Slightly Crippled?
    But it comes with a free Frogurt.

    Damn... I could keep this up all night.

    • by nazh (604234) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:51PM (#8221388) Homepage Journal
      Slightly Crippled?
      But it comes with a free Frogurt.

      /ob simpsons quote

      Owner: Take this object, but beware it carries a terrible curse!
      Homer: [worried] Ooooh, that's bad.
      Owner: But it comes with a free Frogurt!
      Homer: [relieved] That's good.
      Owner: The Frogurt is also cursed.
      Homer: [worried] That's bad.
      Owner: But you get your choice of topping!
      Homer: [relieved] That's good.
      Owner: The toppings contains Potassium Benzoate.
      Homer: [stares]
      Owner: That's bad.


      snipped from snpp.com [snpp.com]
  • by aztektum (170569) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:26PM (#8221204)
    And now we present to you a hundred jokes about Windows already being crippled and a hundred more forshadowing jokes about Windows being crippled.

    (Not too unlike this one)
  • by pilot1 (610480) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:26PM (#8221208)
    Yes, I did RTFA, and it said nothing about what would be different between the "light" version and the normal version.

    Is it going to have fewer M$ programs bundled with it or what? And if it is, what the hell isn't too tightly integrated for them to remove? Solitare and pinball?
    • by confuse(issue) (750477) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @08:19PM (#8221549)
      Solitare and pinball?

      Hello? Remove solitaire?!?! Solitaires random number generator powers all the XP security features.
    • by jsse (254124)
      Yes, I did RTFA, and it said nothing about what would be different between the "light" version and the normal version.

      Becase they're not going to take out any more functionalities, they'd just block them.

      Do you realize that XP Home is just a couple of DLL away from XP pro? A complete guide to convert XP pro from XP home is out there.

      It's more economical to block them rather than taking them away. :)
  • Addiction (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Rosco P. Coltrane (209368) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:27PM (#8221214)
    Customers of this new entry level version of Windows would be presented with a clear and easy upgrade path to both Windows XP Home or Windows XP Professional, he added.

    In France, tobacco companies have started selling packs of cigarettes containing only 19 cigarettes instead of 20. A "crippled" pack of smokes in a sense. Why? so that those who can't afford full-size packs since the latest price rises (read: kids and teens) can buy the 19 cigarette pack and get hooked.

    Sounds like Microsoft is doing exactly that with poor countries: snare customers then pull on the knot. "buy our cheapo limited software, then when you need more functionalities, it'll be a lot more expensive to ditch Microsoft and go for free-software than pay for the Microsoft upgrade".

    But I guess it's business as usual, all companies do that sort of thing, not just Microsoft, I'm not shouting evil-M$ here. But I do hope the Thai government sees through the trap ...

    • Re:Addiction (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Dan East (318230)
      That makes absolutely no sense at all. So reducing the price by a whopping 5% makes them "affordable"? If they are reducing the price by more than 5% then it is cheaper per cigarette to buy the 19 pack instead of the 20 pack, so the 20 pack would go out of favor.

      It would be more shrewd for them to sell a 20 pack that is subdivided into 4 mini-packs. That way a group of friends could all pitch in to by 20 cigarettes, and then they could divvy out the mini-packs of 5.

      Dan East
    • Re:Addiction (Score:3, Interesting)

      by kju (327)
      In germany some companies started to sell packs with 10 cigarettes, which seems to make much more sense than only leaving 1 cigarette out of 20.
    • by Kjella (173770) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @08:52PM (#8221768) Homepage
      Why? so that those who can't afford full-size packs since the latest price rises (read: kids and teens) can buy the 19 cigarette pack and get hooked.

      Try to pay at least some attention next time you're in the convienience store and you'll see pretty much every commodity works this way - those fishsticks, the glass of jam, the block of cheese.

      They all reduce size. 1000g -> 900 -> 800 -> 750 -> 700 -> 600 -> 500 & new "big-pack" of 1000. Why? Because people pay a lot more attention to changes in price - changes in weight or volume go fairly unnoticed.

      Of course in this case it's pretty obvious, since they're few and easily counted. But it's the same thing. People in general have a price they find "acceptable" for a pack of cigarettes, regardless of the price of the individual price per cigarette.

      It's one of the small irrationalities of the mind, and the manufacturers are catering to it. To go from there to this being some directed attack on kids and teens is quite simply hogwash. There's more than enough legitimate complaints to make against them, without grasping for straws.

      Kjella
  • 1500 baht...? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by jxliv7 (512531) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:27PM (#8221219)
    that's 36 US dollars and change.

    so exactly what will be the "reduced functionality"?

    i'd bet it will have something to do with hardware compatibility.

  • by mooredav (101800) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:28PM (#8221221)
    The End User License Agreement won't have a "disagree" option.
  • by B2K3 (669124) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:30PM (#8221236)
    Software publishers in Thailand have begun to realize the huge popularity of pirated software in Thailand: the extreme price differential. You might be able to sell $100 software elsewhere, but when you are selling the $100 software a few feet away from someone selling a pirated copy for $5, what is the rational consumer going to do? Video game manufactures now produce Thai versions of games, complete with a Thai installation manual and even Thai ingame instructions, for only a a few dollars more than the street price of a pirated version. If someone isn't willing to pay 20 times more for the real version, perhaps they're willing to pay only 3 times more. Disclaimer: I was an American who I lived in Thailand for five years. Has anyone else gone shopping at Panthip Plaza?
    • by gl4ss (559668) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:43PM (#8221331) Homepage Journal
      ..actually what they have to realise is that when it's practically impossible for you to pay that 100$ is a substantial amount of your monthly income you're not that likely to spend it on software.

      the current prices for them is like if microsoft was asking 3000$ for copy of windows to run on something that you already paid your arm, leg, lungs, both kidneys and liver for.

      .
    • by foonf (447461) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @08:02PM (#8221455) Homepage
      Microsoft doesn't care about piracy in Thailand or elsewhere, in fact it works largely to their benefit. If people who wouldn't be able to afford their software anyway are pirating it illegally, Microsoft doesn't lose any money, but they gain users and market share.

      The point of this effort isn't to stop piracy, and Microsoft knows it won't. The problem is that the Thai government is setting up a program for the development of a very cheap computer, and they want to distribute a legitimate operating system with it. Since they weren't going to pay Microsoft's asking price, there was the potential of a very large number of computers being distributed without a Microsoft operating system. And even assuming most of the buyers replace the preinstalled OS (Linux, whatever) with a pirated copy of Windows, it still would have the potential of creating a substantial, new base of computer users not running Windows. This plan heads off that possibility. Whether they replace it with a pirated full version of XP or not, anyone who buys this thing is going to be using Windows, and that is what matters to Microsoft.
  • by LostCluster (625375) * on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:36PM (#8221286)
    What this article is leaving out because it wasn't writen for a USA audience is that 1500 baht is roughly equal to US$35-40 depending on where exchange rates are.

    Thailand's People PC project is a government effort to try to get the price of a PC to be affordable for the average person there. Microsoft's contribution to the project is its willingness to sell both Windows XP Home and Microsoft Office for 1500 baht... US$35-40. Uh oh, that's a drastically lower price then MS is charging the rest of the world, and MS doesn't like to have that kind of inconsistency.

    So, that's why they're working on this "light" edition that will have a few things less than XP Home, and therefore be a different product that MS can price seperately.

    Of course, the OSS folks can hop in here and point out that going with Linux would cost them 0 baht which converts to US$0... and that's what Microsoft's worried about. Better to get a little money than to risk getting none at all and letting Linux become the standard operating system in Thailand.
    • Bet you 1500 baht buys a weeks food for a decent sized family.

      Of course Microsoft should price products according to the target market, but given the doctrine of first sale, and the principles of free trade, if you can get a product legitimately for 1500 baht in Thailand, then that same product will become available everywhere for the same price.

      Now you can either have free trade, or you can have fair regional pricing.

      Personally, I'll take Linux.

    • Perhaps Microsoft is hoping that users after 'trying out' XP Lite will want to upgrade to Home/Pro thus giving them more revenue.
  • by dancingmad (128588) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:37PM (#8221294)
    I can't speak for Thailand specifically, but I know it's the same as Bangladesh, when I was over there you could get the Longhorn betas pre-burned and with covers and the whole deal. And they cost next to nothing to boost. You could get them at malls, street vendors, Internet cafes. About the only draw back was that the CDs were so cheap they stop working in a few month or so, but that's plenty of time to use it.

    Why would the average Thai pay for crippleware when they can already get XP for next to nothing?
  • codenamed (Score:5, Funny)

    by jjeffries (17675) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:41PM (#8221317)
    thainy thim
  • by nut (19435) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:45PM (#8221342) Homepage
    Microsoft are going to spend money and time devaluing their product to sell it to people who can't afford it at their current price. This from a company that makes a profit of over $1 billion a quarter [ciol.com].
    • That's not fair; many sellers engage in price discrimination, i.e. they sell essentially the same product to different groups based on each group's ability to pay. This is particularly common when marginal costs are low but sunk costs are high. DVDs are a good example, with "region codes" serving that sole purpose. University education is another nice one, with "scholarships" used to set radically different price points for different customers. Clothes are another classic example. Identical cars are of
  • by nurb432 (527695) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:52PM (#8221394) Homepage Journal
    They already have a 'lite' version, its what runs on PDA's...

    Plus the 'embedded' product line...
  • by dyfet (154716) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:57PM (#8221412) Homepage
    One hallmark of a true monoply is price descrimination and market segmentation. This is where a monopoly charges different prices to different classes of users for reasons that do not reflect actual cost differences and often where the same product is sold in different forms to create artifical price points and artificial or arbitrary market seperations. The key to price discrimination is to exploit the fact that different users have a different willingness and ability to pay for essentially the same goods and services. As such I simply view this as further evidence of monopolistic behavior, as if further evidence is even nessisary.
    • by Killswitch1968 (735908) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @09:19PM (#8221961)
      Examples:
      1. Senior rates and student rates. They are poorer and can't afford things like park admission. This is a way to get them to pay up.
      2. Coupons. Lower income people will now shop at your store. Rich people generally have better things to do with their time than clip coupons.

      Microsoft is not special, and you don't need to be a monopoly to 'exploit' this strategy.
  • by randomErr (172078) <ervin DOT kosch AT gmail DOT com> on Sunday February 08, 2004 @07:58PM (#8221420) Homepage Journal
    Ars Technica [arstechnica.com] has a little more on the story. Here's the text:

    Microsoft is reportedly developing a "light" version of Windows XP to be aimed at developing markets. This is the word from the Bangkok Post (irritatingly long registration required), which is reporting that the origin of the project is Thailand's own program to aggressively seed homes with computers.

    Thailand's People's PC project, initiated last year by the ICT Ministry, has been the genesis of a new operating system from Microsoft Corporation that is now under development, according to Microsoft Thailand Managing Director Andrew McBean. The new OS, as yet unnamed, but a new "light" addition to the Windows XP "family", will be released in limited, selected markets later this year and will offer reduced functionality when compared with Windows XP Professional and Home editions, he said.

    Microsoft has to date been very protective of its pricing model, which aims at more or less parallel prices for its products across the globe. When People's PC was originally announced, Microsoft said that it would offer XP Home and Office Basic at an extremely reduced price, signaling the start of the company's willingness to adjust pricing on national levels. Now, however, it looks like the company is going to develop yet another consumer OS version. Why would the company spend additional resources developing an even-less functional version of Windows XP Home when they could simply just sell Windows XP Home at a reduced rate? The most likely explanation is piracy. In developing countries, piracy is a major problem, and the Redmond Giant is likely trying to avoid mass distribution of its fully functional OS by seeding the populace with a less functional, and probably less attractive OS.

    Mr McBean added that the first release would essentially be XP Home edition with some reduced functionality, although for future versions there would be a chance of additional or incremental development and innovation. But he also pointed out that because of the complexity of an operating system, reducing functionality was not a simple process and every modification would have to be thoroughly tested.

    A release date is not known for certain, but Microsoft Thailand is saying that this will happen, and not before SP2 for XP is released. It also remains unclear just where this product will be available. It's highly unlikely that it will every be available in the West. Rather, this project seems squarely aimed at recent efforts in Asia to build Linux-based solutions for emerging markets.
  • who would want it? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Mark19960 (539856) <Mark@freequest . n et> on Sunday February 08, 2004 @08:08PM (#8221492) Homepage Journal
    when you can pirate the 'full' version for less?
    isnt that what they do there?
    Micro$oft could GIVE the 'lite' version away and STILL be in the same position.
  • by Eric_Cartman_South_P (594330) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @08:09PM (#8221493)
    Lard: Windows XP Media Edition

    Full Fat: Windows XP Professional

    Regular: Windows XP Home Edition

    Lite: Windows XP Family Edition

    Atkins Diet: Mac OS X

    Fat Free: Linux

    Anorexia: *BSD

  • Red Herring (Score:3, Interesting)

    by UnknowingFool (672806) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @08:16PM (#8221531)
    I read the article and it isn't very clear about what is being removed out of XP Lite. It is clear that it will be cheaper than XP Home. I'm sure the things that won't be removed are: IE, Media Player, maybe even MSN Explorer.

    Maybe there won't be much at all removed, but MS needs to justify the lower price. Otherwise, if it offered Windows XP Home at dramatically lower prices, some governments may start asking the 64,000 question:

    "Well, Bill when we said we couldn't afford XP Home at Z price and considered Linux, you say you can offer it at 1/3 Z price. If that was the case, why didn't you offer that before? Were you gouging us that much?"

  • by Jason1729 (561790) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @08:21PM (#8221561)
    Any version of XP a consumer can legally get is already crippled beyond use. It has a huge bug called "product activation" which means you can not reinstall the product you supposedly bought without Microsoft's permission. This renders the product completely useless because you won't be able to re-install it in 5 or 10 years to access old data, or if somehow newer MS code is even worse.

    Why is some other version with an insignificant additional crippiling newsworthy?

    Jason
    ProfQuotes [profquotes.com]
  • by rediguana (104664) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @09:00PM (#8221840)
    This would set a nasty precident for MSFT, once one country has seen that MSFT may remove their global pricing, every country with a currency weaker than the USD will be clamouring for the same benefits. Guess its part of a larger trend away from US companies that need to earn in USD to survive. If you think about that, there are some nasty implications for the US ahead in international trade because of the relatively strong USD...
  • by saarbruck (314638) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @09:22PM (#8221980) Homepage
    I seem to recall not so long ago Microsoft claiming it was impossible [com.com] to remove components or offer any sort of modular form of Windows? Wasn't this one of the prime arguments that MS used in the antitrust trial? "No, your honor, we can't remove Internet Explorer. It just doesn't work that way." I really wish the defense witness had been allowed to demonstrate [com.com] just how modular XP embedded is...
  • by dcavanaugh (248349) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @09:29PM (#8222029) Homepage
    Microsoft's problem in many parts of the world is that their US & Western European prices are dead-on-arrival. People who make $200/month are not about to cough up $199 for a copy of XP Pro. If they sell at a price that makes sense in Thailand, they get accused of "dumping". Piracy has little to do with the situation. Linux is available with no piracy required. With or without piracy, customers are not going to spend money they don't have.

    If I were in charge of global marketing for Microsoft, I would create a country-specific version for certain target markets (like Thailand). It would be cosmetically "dumbed down" and priced to sell. Of course, any of the features that are not included in the base install can probably be downloaded from microsoft.com in about 30 seconds. You can't be accused of dumping if the product in question isn't sold anywhere else.
  • thats not possible (Score:3, Interesting)

    by geekoid (135745) <dadinportland.yahoo@com> on Sunday February 08, 2004 @10:16PM (#8222279) Homepage Journal
    won't it break the OS? I mean the told a judge that there OS couldn't be broke apart.
  • I see potential... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by vandan (151516) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @10:27PM (#8222326) Homepage
    I think if you removed IE, Outlook Express, Active Desktop, Windows Media Player, and Digital Rights Management from Windows, it would be far LESS crippled, and actually MORE valuable.
  • by Tablizer (95088) on Sunday February 08, 2004 @11:34PM (#8222700) Homepage Journal
    Blue Icon of Death
  • by superpulpsicle (533373) on Monday February 09, 2004 @12:59AM (#8223026)
    Like WinXP home and professional, there is a program out there (cough.. NTswitcher) which changes a couple registry settings and poof... home becomes identical to professional. As was the same with the windows 2000 series, I am pretty sure XP light is the same thing regardless of what M$ marketing saids.

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