asp.net mvc barcode generator Livingston: Were there any powerful interests who did not like what you were in Font

Encoder ECC200 in Font Livingston: Were there any powerful interests who did not like what you were

Livingston: Were there any powerful interests who did not like what you were
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doing and tried to stop WebTV Like maybe Microsoft saw it as a threat to Windows
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Perlman: With WebTV . . . Microsoft, I found out over time that they probably
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. . . I mean, they re a very cautious company, and they proactively worry about any potential threats. I don t know if they saw WebTV immediately as a threat, but they saw it as a potential threat. We didn t sell that many units the first Christmas. We were too high-priced. We were $329 when it came out, and the lesson learned there is that you don t charge both a high price and a subscription fee. Just one or the other, right When we repriced WebTV at $99, then we sold a lot of them. So when Microsoft came to acquire us, we only had 56,000 subscribers, which was a fairly modest number. But they still were very interested in us and that convinced me perhaps wrongly, but nonetheless convinced me that their real objective was to capitalize on this market, to grow from what we were doing. Also their desire to create the campus here in Silicon Valley was the other thing. So I kind of thought and maybe even this was their objective at the time that they really were going to develop this area of advanced television systems. But, as time went on, it became apparent that they simply wanted to make sure that nobody else successfully deployed a product in this area. I think they saw WebTV as the only viable player out there. Who knows Maybe it was a compound decision for them. Maybe they thought, Well, maybe there s a market here, and maybe we can protect our flank to make sure nobody else does it. I don t know. But there were some things that I was not allowed to do, which made it impossible for me to stay. They reneged on their commitment to support RealNetworks and Java, and I didn t know how we were going to build a good web-surfing experience without Real and Java compatibility. Then, as we went through the budgeting process and everything else there, and I began to get to know the other top executives at Microsoft, they were talking about negotiating this and that funding, and cutting back products to the point where they no longer made sense. I said, Look, can t we all agree on what is the right objective for the whole company and then fund that I don t care if it s in your group or my group or whatever, but we should do the right thing. It didn t work that way and, of course, any big company is like this. People have certain things they control. That s why there s politics in large companies. I can t operate in that environment. I m just far too focused on the end result. And so for all those reasons the fact that they were very resistant to
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adopt other technologies that they felt might be competitive, and the fact it was just a large organization, no worse than any other large organization, I m sure, but, nonetheless, it was a large organization with a lot of politics it became unbearable. But I think in the end they recognized that WebTV was a profitable thing for them, because they ended up investing in it more, and now it s become MSNTV. And it actually is a significant profit sector. WebTV was marginally profitable in its 18th month of operation and has been profitable every month since then, to this day. In 2005, 10 years after founding, WebTV (now called MSNTV) grossed about $150 million for Microsoft with 65 percent gross margins. Over its 8 years in the market, WebTV has grossed over $1.3 billion. We never expected people would still be using a dial-up connection and browsing on their TV in 2005, but there s still a significant market there for a device like WebTV, primarily for older people who want to be connected to the Web and email, but just will never buy a computer. The other things we did with it that I was very excited about that I was hoping to really capitalize on, which was moving to satellite with DVR and adding more interactivity and eventually moving to broadband cable they have not been successful at pursuing. I think with the satellite stuff they actually introduced a couple of reasonably good products, but they got tripped up in the business negotiations with that, and the cable operators are very resistant to working with Microsoft. Now their new thrust, which I think there s some significant opportunity with, is with IPTV. And that sort of is what the legacy of WebTV moved into. Peter Barrett is heading up that effort. He was the person who created the first browser on WebTV. And here he is still at Microsoft over 10 years later, if you can believe it and he s now trying to get television to work through the Internet, while what we started doing was trying to get the Internet to work through a television.
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