Aiming to foil the advent of Linux and attack software piracy in emerging markets, Microsoft plans to expand its cheap Windows XP Starter Edition offer to more countries, a company executive said Thursday. Windows XP Starter Edition is a version of the operating system designed for a specific market that is easy to use, support and sell, Will Poole, senior vice president of Microsoft's Windows Client group said in a presentation at the company's annual financial analyst meeting here.
Microsoft is already working with the governments in Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia to offer the version of Windows, which has a "lower price appropriate for the emerging market needs," Poole said. While the Starter Edition is still a pilot project, Microsoft does plan to offer the software in other countries as well, he said.
Microsoft has identified emerging markets as a major sales opportunity partly because PC penetration in those countries is low. In the U.S. about 60 percent of households have a PC, in Western Europe about 30 percent have a PC, but in India the figure is below 2 percent, while Russia and China are below 5 percent and Brazil is at about 10 percent, Poole said, citing IDC figures.
News source: InfoWorld