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Microsoft: Facebook Home Is a Copycat, Windows Phone Is the 'Real Thing' 199

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the our-interface-sucked-first dept.
colinneagle writes "Frank X. Shaw, VP of Corporate Communications at Microsoft, did not seem happy about Facebook's Home announcement when he wrote, 'I tuned into the coverage of the Facebook Home event yesterday and actually had to check my calendar a few times. Not to see if it was still April Fools Day, but to see if it was somehow still 2011. Because the content of the presentation was remarkably similar to the launch event we did for Windows Phone two years ago.' Shaw also posted Microsoft's 'Put people first with Windows Phone 7.5' video before writing, 'We understand why Facebook would want to find a way to bring similar functionality to a platform that is sadly lacking it.'"
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Microsoft: Facebook Home Is a Copycat, Windows Phone Is the 'Real Thing'

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  • by Kenja (541830) on Monday April 08, 2013 @07:23PM (#43396331)
    There's no need to fight, you BOTH suck.
    • by MightyMartian (840721) on Monday April 08, 2013 @07:47PM (#43396465) Journal

      Indeed. This seems more like a battle for a hill so small neither can stand on it.

      • by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 08, 2013 @08:08PM (#43396619)
        King of the shrill?
      • by rtb61 (674572) on Monday April 08, 2013 @08:47PM (#43396871) Homepage

        No the Facebook product is quite different. You have to stop thinking of yourself as the typical user and think about the real typical user. I would be concerned for Facebook addicts and this device that makes addiction simpler, quite a few people are going to find themselves in serious psychological trouble. The unrealities of who and who are not really friends, competition in perceived social acceptance and distortion of self image, makes this device and the actual greed driven intent behind this device in it's application quite nasty. Designed from the get go to be psychologically addictive for those susceptible to it. Facebook have demonstrated how nasty they are and how aggressively they will target those vulnerable to their manipulations. To be clear I did go through that whole laborious process of deleting my account because it became apparent how privacy invasive they truly were and definitely not to be trusted.

      • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Monday April 08, 2013 @09:23PM (#43397119) Journal

        Indeed. This seems more like a battle for a hill so small neither can stand on it.

        Worse than that. Facebook puked up yet-another-UI-twist on top of their giant dataset that keeps people coming back through all the UI twists and Microsoft attempted to take credit for the design.

        When was the last time somebody said something nice about Facebook's UI/UX? They're like the Ebay of social networking: network effects are very strongly in their favor; but everyone spends all their time loathing them for everything else. Why would Microsoft do anything but distance themselves from that?

        • It's been a few years, but still leaps and bounds better than MySpace.. and I've found g+ to be way too bulky for browsers on limited hardware. That said, I also have adblock, and probably don't see all of facebook.
        • When was the last time somebody said something nice about Facebook's UI/UX? They're like the Ebay of social networking: network effects are very strongly in their favor; but everyone spends all their time loathing them for everything else. Why would Microsoft do anything but distance themselves from that?

          A sense of nostalgia, I'm guessing.

      • So, are you betting on the therizinosaurus or the epidendrosaurus to win the fight?

    • I heard Eric Cartman demanding "Respect mah au-thor-tah!" in Shaw's complaint.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 08, 2013 @07:51PM (#43396501)

      This was just a terrifically bad idea on Shaw's part. Desperately pleading that you did something first so you should get some attention is never going to win you sales or good PR. That said, it doesn't seem like Microsoft really has any other strategy (except perhaps for their video game market, where they bought their relevance.)

      • by Grishnakh (216268) on Monday April 08, 2013 @08:26PM (#43396733)

        Have you ever known Microsoft to do anything really intelligent to win good PR and sales? Every one of their marketing campaigns has been a complete debacle (remember the people running around in MSN butterfly outfits? Or the commercial for Microsoft SongSmith?). I don't know where MS gets their marketing people, but they're probably the worst in the Fortune 500.

        • Have you ever known Microsoft to do anything really intelligent to win good PR and sales?

          Of course not. Clearly, they're the dominant OS in the world because of the first-class quality of their software and ecosystem, which is truly superior to all alternatives. It has absolutely nothing to do with market positioning and PR. /Sarcasm disengaged

          • by Grishnakh (216268) on Monday April 08, 2013 @11:19PM (#43397795)

            You really think MS's marketing campaigns have led it to success?

            MS was successful because they were in the right place at the right time by providing the OS to IBM's PC, whose open architecture made it popular for cloning, and because of this popularity tons of application software ran on top of it. Of course a bunch of dirty tricks to ruin competitors didn't hurt, plus they made/bought out some office software which became the business standards. There weren't any advertising campaigns, ever, that helped them in these endeavors.

          • by phantomfive (622387) on Tuesday April 09, 2013 @12:03AM (#43398037) Journal
            Microsoft is successful because of their product managers who do a good job responding to customer requests. Their customers of course, are businesses, not consumers. And their communication with customers is amazing. They are a model of how to build a B2B company.

            Their consumer outreach, including their marketing, has always been bad.
            • by 0123456 (636235) on Tuesday April 09, 2013 @01:39AM (#43398439)

              Microsoft is successful because of their product managers who do a good job responding to customer requests. Their customers of course, are businesses, not consumers.

              So explain Windows 8.

              Which business customers were demanding a touch-screen tablet UI on their desktop PCs?

              • Well it goes like this. Ballmer had just scored some really good crack and was smoking it when they asked him about the next operating system Microsoft should design....
              • by phantomfive (622387) on Tuesday April 09, 2013 @02:19AM (#43398613) Journal
                None, which is why there was huge infighting among the execs at Microsoft. It's a total change in the way Microsoft does things.

                I suspect part of the problem may be that, at the OS level, everyone is pretty happy with Windows 7. They don't really want new features added. Business people aren't giving them feedback, so they're kind of directionless on what new things to add, but still want to create a new OS.
              • Maybe it was Ballmer pulling a "Jobs", overriding those product managers on a hunch that "mobile/touch is the future". The difference is that Microsoft's business, unlike Apple's, runs for a large part on pleasing businesses rather than just consumers. And of course Ballmer's vision is a bit murkier than Steve Job's was.
      • by ganjadude (952775)
        videogames? they are talking about needing a consistant internet connection for their next console to even work. with a 60% give or take broadband access in this country (usa) they are screwing themselves with that. Hell i hate sony after they took my linux from me on my PS3, and i didnt ever expect to want to buy a sony system again, but if M$ is always on a la steam (which is ok because tis a computer running a service, not a console with 1 use..well main use) i might seriously consider pushing all my peo
        • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

          by Opportunist (166417)

          Steam requiring an always-on connection? Last time I checked my portfolio, few of them require a connection at all (ok, aside of getting the game in the first place, of course), and none require a connection throughout the period you're playing. Unless of course it's a multiplayer game that obviously needs a connection with the other players...

      • This was just a terrifically bad idea on Shaw's part. Desperately pleading that you did something first so you should get some attention is never going to win you sales or good PR. That said, it doesn't seem like Microsoft really has any other strategy (except perhaps for their video game market, where they bought their relevance.)

        It seems doubly foolish because Facebook appears to be aiming 'Home' at terribly unexciting Android handsets, including some already in the field that may be upgrade-able(if you can call it that). Is 'the competitor's product that will soon be on sale for peanuts-after-contract, or even downloadable for free, is totally just like ours!!!' really the message you want out there?

    • by Culture20 (968837)
      And we hate both of them equally and for the same reasons: bad software, spying on users, and we're required to use them due to social or work obligations. Some of us need to use Windows for games, and some of our family members need to use Facebook for games.
    • Pretty much my sentiment when I read it.

      What happened to good ol' competition and let the better product win? Or, in this time, the product that sucks less?

      I know, I know, it's anathema in this corporate world where competition is equaled to patent infringement.

    • Jeez, might as well just break out the blueprints for the Edsel while they're at it and wash the ride down with some New Coke.
    • by ackthpt (218170)

      There's no need to fight, you BOTH suck.

      Truly. I'm so underwhelmed by farcebook home I'm nearly into negative territory here.

      Someone tell me where I can go to watch some paint drying on a wall, so I can get some enthusiasm going here.

  • by symbolset (646467) * on Monday April 08, 2013 @07:27PM (#43396355) Journal
    This one? [engadget.com]
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 08, 2013 @07:31PM (#43396385)

    Last time I checked everything microsoft has ever done is remarkably similar to things others have been doing for years.

  • Dear Microsoft ... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by domulys (1431537)
    Dear Microsoft,

    Facebook tolerates you. It is thanks to them that you remain relevant. E.g., when Facebook Graph Search can't find a particular item, it currently defaults to Bing... but, that can easily change. Please, pretty please, just give them a reason to reconsider their allegiances, and I am sure they will happily discard you like the dead skin off a snake.

    Never forget that the enemy of your enemy is your friend. Besides, if Facebook has taught us anything, it's that regardless of who had the id
    • Re: (Score:2, Flamebait)

      by DogDude (805747)
      Facebook tolerates you. It is thanks to them that you remain relevant.

      Riiight... the company that sells the OS used by 95%+ of all computers on the planet needs the latest fad website to stay relevant.... Riiiight...
    • by oztiks (921504)

      It's a bit of a "need you need me" sentiment FaceBook Maps and Translate features are Bing driven, what alternative is there for FB? Google?

    • Facebook has to tolerate Microsoft - Microsoft owns part of Facebook:
      http://whoownsfacebook.com/ [whoownsfacebook.com]

      Not a lot, true but certainly enough to have a small say. Also, Facebook make most of their revenue on PC, not mobile, and PC is still almost exclusively Windows (around 90%), so while Microsoft's star is falling, Facebook still makes most of its money via Microsoft users.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Both suck, but saying that facebook copied windows phone is like saying a lawnmower is a F1 sports car!

    • by amiga3D (567632)

      They both have four wheels and a motor so they are just alike.

      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Are you a lawyer for apple?

  • by faedle (114018) on Monday April 08, 2013 @07:42PM (#43396441) Homepage Journal

    .. thou doth protest too much, methinks.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 08, 2013 @07:54PM (#43396529)

    Whoever loses, we win.

  • by sootman (158191) on Monday April 08, 2013 @08:07PM (#43396601) Homepage Journal

    Are they also upset that they invented the Tablet PC in 2002 and then Apple ate their lunch eight years later by actually delivering it in an appealing form factor that people actually wanted ? "Waaah, waaah, we were fiiiiirst!" Apple learned that "first" doesn't always equal success, but they quit whining about it and did something about it instead. Worked out pretty well for them.

    • by SethJohnson (112166) on Monday April 08, 2013 @08:33PM (#43396775) Homepage Journal

      Are they also upset that they invented the Tablet PC in 2002 and then Apple ate their lunch eight years later by actually delivering it in an appealing form factor that people actually wanted ?

      I'm not sure how you're sourcing this, but this is actually a very accurate depiction of Microsoft's deluded perspective. A couple of years ago, a friend of mine was working as a consultant on some projects with Microsoft and was flying to Redmond frequently. I asked him if the people he was working with were feeling disillusioned about where they've been heading and their prospects against the competition. He related that they were proud that their company had already invented the tablet several years ago.

      Internally, they must be bragging about that as a morale-booster or something in the face of pretty daunting prospects for what they're working on now.

      Seth

      • by kesuki (321456)

        sorry but captain picard called prior art on your tablets http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yVqHoGKQXLI [youtube.com]

        looks like sony (who did all the displays for st tng) invented the tablet computer first...

      • by jellyfoo (2865315) on Tuesday April 09, 2013 @02:32AM (#43398645)

        In my experience with a few Microsoft employees, I have yet to meet any of them who are highly critical about the direction the company is headed. They all seem to believe the radical decisions made by the company will pay off in some way despite the mass hatred towards them.

        The only ones that are truly critical about Microsoft, no longer work there. I'm strongly of the belief that Microsoft has a very good indoctrinating and brainwashing methodology with their employees. This infallible belief in thinking they're at the forefront of technology and know what's best for tech can only be explained by mass delusion. Which horrifies me.

  • by Morgaine (4316) on Monday April 08, 2013 @08:07PM (#43396613)

    [No axe to grind since I use neither MS nor FB ...]

    Stories like this one remind me of politicians playing party politics and slagging off everything the opposition does and says instead of focusing on whether it's a good idea or not.

    It seems that long gone are the days when the top companies competed on product and politics was (ostensibly) about doing the best for the nation. Doing good work has become quite secondary to politicking (in the worst sense of the word) in both areas.

    • Well, duh. Of course they are. After all, they put up the politicians you then may vote for. That's the beauty of democracy.

  • NIH (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward

    Microsoft is just mad that they were too caught up in Not Invented Here syndrome that they did not think of embracing Android and building on top of it like Facebook did. So much money wasted reimplementing a whole mobile operating system when they could have just built Windows Phone as a custom UI on Android.

  • ... mentioning Coca-Cola?

    Oh geeze... my age is showing.

  • I fully expect Facebook to sell more copies of their mobile phone than WP8... Not saying either is good. I suspect MS is bitter.
  • Windows Passion (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 08, 2013 @08:43PM (#43396847)

    Nobody is excited about Windows phones. There is no passion for the platform. But its not not just Windows phones.

    I think the game is up for Microsoft. They are delivering some amazing things now but nobody can see it. I'm not saying that everyone is blind, but Microsoft has lost our attention. Top SQL admins are moving to SQL 2012, but out side of them, I don't see much. Organizations are just now making the move to Windows 7. That's a good 3 years of a good product lost. Server 2012 is the most significant server OS they have ever released, yet nobody is excited about it. Windows 8 Phone is actually a good product, the hard part is getting it into people's hands. Windows 8 start screen actually works well with the Surface Pro, just not on any real computers. (Sorry MS, I gave that start screen an honest try but it has to go on my desktop/laptop)

    I know I come across as a fanatic for writing this, but every IT group that is a Microsoft shop should be this passionate about the new stuff. The fact that they are not should be a big issue for Microsoft.

    • I think the game is up for Microsoft.

      The game isn't up, but their heyday seems to be past.

      I heard a speaker a while back who had a view of waves in the digital industry. There was IBM. Then there was DEC. Then there was Microsoft. Then there was Amazon. Then there was Face book. Next there will be...?

      Many of the "old" ones are still around, and still huge businesses. They just aren't viewed as the hot item / trendsetter anymore.

    • I had done a submission a week back - http://slashdot.org/submission/2570591/idc-predicts-windows-phone-to-be-the-fastest-growing-platform [slashdot.org]

      Overall, IDC says Windows Phone and Windows Mobile devices accounted for six percent of the 227 million smartphones shipped worldwide in the fourth quarter of 2012. For the year, Windows Phone made up 2.6 percent, however, the analyst firm is predicting Windows Phone to be the fastest growing platform between now to 2016 with a compound annual growth rate of 71.3 per

  • by jellyfoo (2865315) on Monday April 08, 2013 @08:49PM (#43396889)

    Seriously, I'm getting fucking tired of companies slagging off at each other, with either aggressive or passive aggressive comments made between various CEOs or VPs or whoever thinks they're important enough to get the spotlight for a few minutes.

    Make good stuff that people want. If a competitor is doing something that's risks drawing attention away from your stuff, don't act like children. Just shut the fuck up and present something even better. If you feel you have to acknowledge the competition, do it with some old-fashioned class for goodness sake. This bickering gets old extremely fast.

    • Well if they are following their CEO's example, then what do you expect? Remember it was Ballmer who boldly predicted Apple would never see the iPhone in any significant numbers. Today it makes more money for Apple than all of MS products. Steve Jobs was a prick but he was right more often than not.
    • Seriously, I'm getting fucking tired of companies slagging off at each other, with either aggressive or passive aggressive comments made between various CEOs or VPs or whoever thinks they're important enough to get the spotlight for a few minutes.

      What do you expect them to do? Innovate, and sell us stuff that's actually useful?

      Nah, that's too much trouble.

    • Relax. As long as they aim at each other, at least they're not bothering their customers.

  • Could Microsoft possibly be any more butthurt over this?
    • by kamapuaa (555446)

      More butthurt than the VP of Corporate Communications writing something about it on his personal blog?

      Yes, it is very possible to be more butthurt than that.

      • by oztiks (921504)

        Yes but let's not forget about the guys at Jabba and what they have in store in the coming years.

        What I see for FaceBook's future is pretty inevitable. Consider Google+ for Droid, Skype for Windows, Apple figures something out and then there is FaceBook which simply becomes a desktop access point based on people's personal preference, as you would make your choices of search engine you'd also make your choice on what Social Media website to use and if there is an open standard for all then you're only going

  • by roc97007 (608802) on Monday April 08, 2013 @09:06PM (#43396997) Journal

    Ok, compared to whatever Facebook Home is, I'm willing to stipulate that Windows Phone is the real thing.

    The question that immediately comes to mind is, the real what?

    • Ok, compared to whatever Facebook Home is, I'm willing to stipulate that Windows Phone is the real thing.

      The question that immediately comes to mind is, the real what?

      The real attempt to be the latest gimmick that everyone thinks they have to have.

    • Does that really matter? You have two companies here who fight over who has the biggest, only problem is that what they're comparing is tumors.

      • by roc97007 (608802)

        Does that really matter? You have two companies here who fight over who has the biggest, only problem is that what they're comparing is tumors.

        Brilliant. That is my new favorite quote. :-)

    • The real successor to the Zune.
  • Microsoft has the right of way on this one. Anyone who has used Windows Phone for the last couple of years can spot the lovingly copied design in Facebook Home aka Death of Privacy.
  • Let us know when you have some users.
  • It never meant anything. Doesn't mean anything to the bully at the movies who takes your seat, didn't mean anything to the settlers when the natives told them.

    Besides, MS, how does it feel to be on the other side of "But I did that first, he just copied me!" for a change?

  • Windows Phone requires an "always on" [slashdot.org] connection...
  • by miroku000 (2791465) on Tuesday April 09, 2013 @03:33AM (#43398847)
    Both of them are based on the previous Adroid-based Motoblur. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Motoblur [wikipedia.org]

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