Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Free versus paid

It is amazing what you can get for free these days on the internet. Besides access to the usual websites, you can get free videos, free software, free books, free music, and a host of other things. What do you do if you are used to making money by charging for something and someone offers the same thing (or close to it) for free? If that happens you either get ready to close up shop or find a way to give your stuff away for free and still stay in business. This is what is happening to Microsoft, which makes most of it's money from selling software. Microsoft charges for it's operating system but now you can get a device that has a system on it that is free (Chromebook) or low cost (Mac). Or you can get a phone or tablet with a system that is either free (Android) or low cost (IOS). The same goes for it's flagship software "Office". There are several free (Open Office, Google Drive) or low cost alternatives (Pages) that work just as well. How is Microsoft going to stay in business? It better find a way quickly or it will not be in business for too long.

What do you think?