Well it wasn't hard to figure out what to write about this morning -- after
all, the Telecom/Microsoft announcement on Friday is probably one of the biggest
things to happen on the NZ Netscene since the Southern Cross Cable was
the contents of Aardvark's "million-dollar ideas" notebook
are revealed for all to see!
But what are the implications for local Net users?
Despite Trevor Mallard's ongoing denial of suggestions that the government is about to leap
into Microsoft's bed in respect to the upcoming e-Government project, Bill
Gates was on Friday quoted as saying: "The initiatives that
Microsoft New Zealand is working on with the government and our other local
partner swill create growth opportunities for the country's entire technology
Now look closely at the core of that statement: "with the government and
our other local partner".
So Bill considers the NZ Government to be a partner eh? What could have
possibly led him to form that opinion? After all, as far as we (the taxpayer)
are aware, Microsoft has received no special treatment or fiscal concessions
from government have they?
Remember that this comment by Gates comes hot on the tail of several clear
slips of the tongue by Mallard that tend to indicate that Microsoft is the preferred
partner for this venture.
Just what kind of understanding do Bill and Trevor already have in place that
we're not being told about? When it comes to Mallard's denial of Microsoft's
involvement in the eGovernment project, me think he doth protest too much!
So what about the merger of XTRA.co.nz and MSN.co.nz -- what will be gained
Well it sounds like a great piece of synergy to me. XTRA has a good site
with some good content and MSN.co.nz has a lot of traffic because of the way
most copies of IE are configured to use MSN as their homepage (I mean really,
would anyone really use MSN.co.nz their homepage by choice??).
The combination of these two factors almost guarantees that if the two companies
build a single co-branded site (such as the
NineMSN site in
Australia, then it will be the most highly visited piece of realestate in the
And what will this co-branded site be called? Well it's not brain surgery --
A visit to
help you figure it out.
So why would Microsoft bother investing $300m in a tiny country such as
Okay, so $300m is probably less than Bill Gates spends on reinstalling Windows
on his laptop each year -- but he's not silly and he obviously expects to
see a significant return on that money.
Now... someone remind me -- how much was the government budgeting for that
e-Government project? $16 million was it?
What's that Bill, your back is itchy?
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