Microsoft Partners: Vista Campaign Was Deceptive

Microsoft may soon be defending itself from a class action lawsuit over its 'Vista Capable' marketing campaign, and several of the vendor's channel partners aren't the least bit surprised. Microsoft launched the Vista Capable campaign in order to keep PC sales strong after its decision to delay the release of Vista to consumers until after the 2006 holiday season. Consumers who bought a PC with the 'Vista Capable' sticker would get an XP machine and then later be eligible for a free or discounted upgrade to Vista.

What the campaign didn't specify was which of the four versions of Vista -- Home Basic, Home Premium, Business, or Ultimate -- a PC was capable of running. And according to solution providers, therein lies the rub.

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i have been running vista ultimate on my desktop and laptop since they release it.
My laptop is 2 months close to two years of age and it was tagged by a sticker as Vista Capable. Its 1.66 core duo (not core 2 duo) has 1gb of RAM and it runs vista ultimate smoothly.

There is nothing wrong with this Vista Capable campaign as long as the computer tagged can run aero and premium/ultimate versions. Im sure there are computer with the sticker than can only run Vista Basic. Maybe this is the main concern among customers.

Without looking at anyone's definition, "Vista-capable", to me, raises red flags just like the "Minimum Requirements" specs listed on a game box. I don't see how it's any different. Caveat emptor.

doesn't come as a surprise. We should expect such things from Microsoft. It has a history and reputation of being sly in their affairs.

RE: #6 Posted by Skwerl on 14 Feb 2008 - 16:42
I can certainly see both sides of the issue, but I don't think that Microsoft did anything wrong- certainly not intentionally to dupe consumers.

Thanks the gods that SOMEONE has a sense of sarcasm, Oh, it wasn't meant to be sarcastic??? Well it damned sure ought to have been!


"certainly not intentionally "

I think that's the crock of the whole thing. Microsoft, again, did something without thinking it thru.

Clear labeling on things?? I mean geez, the next thing you know people will want a label on their coffee from McDonnalds telling me its hot so I dont pour it all over my lap and claim that no one told me it was hot... oh.. wait its already there.

Seriously, I was wondering how long it was going to take before some greedy people decided to sue someone over this. But any IT person knows that a "Vista Ready" or "Vista Capable" machine is just a PC that runs XP Pro awsome... and will probably run Vista Home/Home Premium well... I never expected for a second that a vista ready or vista capable machine would be anything more than barely able to run vista

"PC that runs XP Pro awsome"

Then why would you even want to think of downgrading to Vista.

Gee, there I go again, stirring up the pot.

Microsoft Windows Vista is the latest version of the Windows platform, bringing it to version 6. There are multiple editions of Vista, however the platform (e.g. Windows Version 6) will run on all hardware with either sticker.

If people are too lazy to find out what features rely on what hardware, then how is that MS's fault? Vista will work on all Vista stickered machines. The 'premium' retail editions will run on Vista Premium systems... how is this confusing?

No offence to Americans as a whole, but seriously.... your just going to end up being a country full of lawyers and insurances at this rate. Just more end-user ignorance pushing up costs for everyone else.

(stevehoot said @ #11)
Microsoft Windows Vista is the latest version of the Windows platform, bringing it to version 6. There are multiple editions of Vista, however the platform (e.g. Windows Version 6) will run on all hardware with either sticker.

If people are too lazy to find out what features rely on what hardware, then how is that MS's fault? Vista will work on all Vista stickered machines. The 'premium' retail editions will run on Vista Premium systems... how is this confusing?

No offence to Americans as a whole, but seriously.... your just going to end up being a country full of lawyers and insurances at this rate. Just more end-user ignorance pushing up costs for everyone else.

-No, "Vista" will not necessarily run on all "Vista-stickered" machines. Come on, that's an easy one.
-By the way, what are "Vista Premium systems"? Are the computers that I build "Vista Premium systems"?
-Why couldn't MS simply have specified which of their pointless versions of Vista ran on each machine?
(Oh yeah, that's right: such a tactic will eventually take even more money from consumers than the already ridiculously overpriced (say, by 400% in some cases) pre-built PCs do)
-No "offence" to you, but seriously... "your" just going to end up on the wrong (see: "poor") side of an extremely well-founded class action lawsuit one day.

It seems that Microsoft is really making a royal cockup in recent years.... Good thing I've moved on to something better.

What a bunch of crap. My laptop has a Vista Capable sticker (Came with XP Home). It had 512MB of RAM stock, I added 1GB, and I can run Vista Business just fine. From my understanding, when this "promotion" was released, all laptops with integrated graphics either had the ATI xpress 200M or Intel GMA 950, both which can run Aero without problems. The sticker also had to do with how much RAM the computer comes with.

I've also seen Vista Premium Ready stickers on some laptops. Seemed pretty self explanatory for me, but I guess MS should have put more specific stickers for the idiots (average joes/janes) out there. Seems everyone just wants to sue MS to get a piece out of them.

This is exactly why McDonald's has to write "caution, hot!" on it's coffee cups now. Not everyone is able to figure out that coffee is hot. In the same way, not everyone could take the 60 seconds it required to read up what "Vista capable" and "Vista premium" mean and as a result, made misinformed choices and blamed Microsoft when expectations were not met. Is it really fair to punish Microsoft for consumer's laziness? After all, they made the information easily available.

If this lawsuit is successful it says a lot about American society and will significantly change advertising and marketing. Get ready to see a legal disclaimer on absolutely everything.

I can certainly see both sides of the issue, but I don't think that Microsoft did anything wrong- certainly not intentionally to dupe consumers. A duped consumer is an angry consumer, and no company wants its customers to be p!ssed off.

I guess you were one of the few confused by "Vista capable" and "Vista premium". Sorry that this is so confusing for you. Perhaps you should join the laziness lawsuit and blame Microsoft if you made a misinformed choice.

Or are you just spreading negative comments on Microsoft for no reason (yet again)?

(C_Guy said @ #5.1)
I guess you were one of the few confused by "Vista capable" and "Vista premium". Sorry that this is so confusing for you. Perhaps you should join the laziness lawsuit and blame Microsoft if you made a misinformed choice.

Or are you just spreading negative comments on Microsoft for no reason (yet again)?

Actually, you seem to have also gotten the terms a bit confused, yourself.

It is "Vista Capable" and "Vista Ready". No mention of "Basic", "Premium" or "Ultimate" nonsense is allowed.

No.. wait. Looks like I might be confused again. The Microsoft website mentions "Capable" and "Premium Ready", so it seems that they mention a version on their high-end sticker, but exclude it on their low-end sticker.

/me re-reads article to find out where it is claimed to be a "lie".

Nope. Claimed to be deceptive. You are arguing against a statement that wasn't made.

(funkymunky said @ #4)
But it's not a lie.

It is capable of running Vista hence "Vista Capable"

Just like Nvidia's 8600 cards are "capable" of running DX10. Capable at 10FPS! That is a not a satisfactory user experience.

eh... I worked at a electronics retailer when this campaign was launched, and we got brochures that stated that "vista capable" meant it could run Home Basic.

Later on we got the "Vista Ready" labeling, which meant you could run Home Premium or Ultimate.

This was all very well stated in the brochures (for costumers).

Heaven forbid that things be made clear for customers, like "Vista Basic Ready" and "Vista Premium Ready".

Making no references to which version of Vista is being referenced, and merely stating "ready" or "capable" is deliberately ambiguous.