Bonum Certa Men Certa

It's Official: Microsoft Loses DVD Standards Battle; Is OOXML Next?

It is safe to say now, particularly after Toshiba's formal announcement, that Microsoft has lost its battle for HD DVD1. Some will say that Microsoft puts its cards on downloads anyway (VOD), but this remains a separate question.

At risk of further escaping the scope of this Web site, it needs to be added that Microsoft's XBox 360 had a stake in HD DVD. Unsurprisingly, last week it was found that Microsoft had sunk to the bottom position it its own back yard (consoles sales in the US) and it then faked shortages, having stuffed the channel for 2 years. Here is some related analysis.

Microsoft does not seem overly concerned about the imminent demise of HD DVD as a high definition disc format. Having backed HD DVD, especially with their Xbox 360 add on HD DVD player, why the sudden ‘laid back’ nature with the format war? Could it be there is yet another revamp of the Xbox 360 waiting in the wings? Perhaps with a Blu-ray drive.


To Microsoft, this means another big burning hole in the pocket. Many XBox employees (the talented ones most likely) escaped the company last year and XBox is part of the reason Microsoft approaches debt.

Microsoft biggest cash cow remains Microsoft Office and its current/next-generation keeper is OOXML. We need to defeat OOXML in order to "tilt Microsoft into the death spiral" (to sarcastically use Microsoft's own subcultural phrase, which it used to describe moves against rivals like Lotus or Netscape).

___ 1 Toshiba's short list of supporters is said to have included Microsoft ("...short list of supporters include Microsoft Corp."). HD DVD may be somewhat of a joint venture where Microsoft might use Toshiba as a PR shield, a PR image disguise. Intel was among the supporters of HD DVD as well. They are always with Microsoft. Both companies also support OOXML, according to the Asian press.

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