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Microsoft Breakup Plan in the Works

Lawyers representing the government's case against Microsoft Corp. have come up with a plan to breakup the giant software company, according to a story in today's USA Today.

The article explains that Microsoft (www.microsoft.com) would be split into separate companies. The first would be for the various Windows operating systems and the other for Microsoft software packages.

Software would probably include Office and BackOffice. No other separate company, such as one for Internet products or application development tools, was mentioned in the article.

Microsoft has not responded to the offer but the company has been vehemently against a breakup as a settlement to the Department of Justice's case against the company. In November, District Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson released his "Findings of Fact" in the DOJ's antitrust case against Microsoft, flatly calling Microsoft a monopoly and asserting that the company stifled innovation in the computer industry.

While Microsoft chairman and CEO Bill Gates has left the door open to settlement talks, he has also stressed that reserving the right to innovate and add new features to products would be a key condition of any settlement talks. -- Brian Ploskina

About the Author

Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.

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