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“OpenOffice Skakes Microsoft”

Australian IT publishes “OpenOffice Skakes Microsoft,” reviewing and promoting OpenOffice to a mainstream tech audience.

With OOo 3.0, most normal users will find OpenOffice a complete replacement for MS Office: “Here at Doubleclick we’ve been using OpenOffice 3.0 for some weeks and we must say it’s getting harder and harder to see why average users would want to shell out several hundred dollars for MS Office.”

That’s great for software users, but why does it “skake” Microsoft? (And what does “skake” mean, anyway?) Here’s author David Frith’s answer:

Steve Ballmer recently told a US business users’ conference OpenOffice is the only one that Microsoft regards as serious competition.

A “thermometer” on the website shows why.

In the first four weeks after release, OpenOffice 3.0 was downloaded more than 12 million times.

That’s probably at least $2.5 billion lost to Microsoft, and mounting at $600 million a week.

So now you know why OpenOffice’s existence gives Steve Ballmer the shivers.

Don’t look at these numbers as money Microsoft has lost (that would be cruel and unnecessary). Look at these numbers as money everyone has collectively saved, and that is a great thing in an economy like today’s!

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