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Google and Microsoft Look at Clouds from Both Sides Now

Google and Microsoft agree on less than Scott Brown and Martha Coakley, so it's no surprise they differ on clouds. Both companies' views are clearly informed by their pasts. In the case of Microsoft, it's always sold software meant to be installed on hard drives with files stored locally. Google is all about the Internet.

All this came out in a debate last week at the New York Technology Council. As you might expect, Google feels that everything can and should be done in the cloud -- with few or no exceptions. Microsoft believes in the cloud, in part because that's what the market believes and in part because it's the natural evolution of software. But Redmond feels that while some stuff should be in the cloud, there's also a critical role for old-style clients. Redmond sees a hybrid approach where data can be split between the two models and even synchronized.

Critics see self-interest powering both attitudes. Microsoft needs to protect its old base of products, while Google wants everything on the 'Net so it can index and sell ads against all this data.

Which company would you put your money on? Send your thoughts, but not your dollars, to dbarney@redmondmag.com.

Posted by Doug Barney on January 20, 2010 at 11:53 AM


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