Microsoft executive unloads on Google, other rivals
The morning keynote turned into a rally as Microsoft Chief Operating Officer Kevin Turner took the stage Wednesday and shot down competitors that critics say have dusted Microsoft.
Seattle Times technology reporter
WASHINGTON — The morning keynote turned into a rally as Microsoft Chief Operating Officer Kevin Turner took the stage Wednesday and shot down competitors that critics say have dusted Microsoft.
From consumer companies Apple and Google to enterprise competitors Oracle and VMware, Microsoft has taken market share, Turner said in his speech at the Worldwide Partners Conference.
In the areas where Microsoft has faltered, such as phones, Turner said, Microsoft is coming back.
On Google, Turner had plenty to say.
"The 'go do' is don't let customers get Googled," he said to the 13,000 representatives of companies at the conference. He said it hurt to see Google ads touting new customers and showed an ad in BusinessWeek magazine boasting about winning the Jaguar Land Rover business.
He followed that with comments from employees complaining about how much less productive they were using Google e-mail and disparaging the software as the equivalent of vinyl car seats.
"In the productivity space, they're coming at us guns blazing," he said. "Recently they introduced a ruler in their word processor, an application that we've had for 14 years."
Turner said Microsoft has also won back customers from Google. "We don't want some of the customers; we want all of them."
In the search arena, Turner predicted Microsoft's search engine Bing would have 30 percent of the market once the Yahoo integration is complete. Google dominates the industry with more than 60 percent of the market.
Turner even mocked Google's oft-cited corporate statement to do no evil.
"We don't have a mission statement to say don't do evil because we don't need a statement to not do evil."
help poor nations
The tenure of the conference went from "Google sucks" to "Save Haiti" when former President Clinton spoke Wednesday morning.
Clinton encouraged technology companies to think about the challenges facing countries, especially how to finance small and medium-sized businesses in post-earthquake Haiti.
"It's something I wish you could help me with," Clinton said. "In most really poor places, small and medium businesses provide the lion's share of economic activity. There's almost no financing for small and medium-sized enterprises for poor countries."
Clinton began his talk at the Verizon Center offering a framework for how he sees the world, starting with the question: How does he keep up with "American Idol," "Dancing with the Stars," new research on human evolution and subatomic particles called muons?
"We live in the most interdependent age in history," he said. "The positives are obvious. But it's too unstable, unequal and unsustainable."
A more interconnected world makes solving the problems an urgent need, he said.
He challenged the attendees to think about what they take for granted. "You would be surprised if the lights went out. You would be surprised if the air conditioning went out, and we started sweltering. You don't have any problem drinking the water," he said. "I spend my time in places where none of the people can take that for granted."
During a short question-and-answer session, Clinton said he is on Facebook and answers questions on the social-network site. "We actually now do tweets from time to time to keep people up with what we're doing, which I never thought I would do," he said.
Sharon Pian Chan: 206-464-2958 or firstname.lastname@example.org