Microsoft Acquires Virtual PC; Will Switch Campaign Benefit?

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Date: Wednesday, February 19th, 2003, 14:59
Category: Archive

MacCentral reports that the Microsoft Mac Business Unit (MacBU) has acquired Connectix’s Virtual PC line. Don’t panic yet: the MacBU says it will continue to develop and support the product, and the acquisition is “all about compatibility.” Microsoft’s name on Virtual PC may be very good news for Apple. For years, Mac advocates have tried to convince Windows users that choosing the Mac doesn’t have to mean sacrificing compatibility, and, much as Mac evangelists have traditionally hated Windows, Virtual PC has long been a switch advocate’s talking point. But it’s always been tricky to convince users that these solutions really work, despite improved performance and new features. Microsoft putting its name on a product that lets Macs run Windows is revolutionary politically, a major departure for the company, and a big asset for Apple selling potential switchers. The big question mark, in fact, appears to be Connectix, which is losing its flagship products and key employees but has no apparent plans beyond 6 months. For users, though, the news is almost certainly good — and a sign that, with this investment, Microsoft may not be taking Apple’s introduction of Keynote so hard after all.

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