Vista filip for US states, claims IDC

Invisible hand

Windows Vista teaser

While reviewers debate the merits of Windows Vista and analysts puzzle the over the pace of adoption, IDC and Microsoft are in little doubt over its impact for the economies of America's 50 states.

To date, IDC has estimated Windows Vista will create 37,000 new jobs and generate $15.5bn in related products and services across just four US states.

Having sponsored IDC to survey the effects of Windows Vista, Microsoft is now pumping out findings with predictable regularity for the enlightenment of locals. With four states down, all we can now do is wait as Microsoft crunches through the next 46.

Far from being pure PR fluff, the numbers will be used by Microsoft to curry favor with a notoriously uppity and litigious section of the IT community.

The rebellious Commonwealth of Massachusetts is the latest geography to be highlighted by Microsoft as a financial beneficiary of Windows Vista.

The operating system will create 5,000 new jobs for state-based IT companies and generate $2bn in revenue during the first year of availability, according to IDC.

Massachusetts's IT department two years ago decided to throw out both Windows and Office and embrace software conforming only to open specifications - namely Linux and OpenOffice. After much lobbying and politicking the decision was reversed.

Massachusetts - along with Florida - were among nine prosecuting states which in 2002 rejected the US government’s proposed settlement with Microsoft in its long-running antitrust case. Florida, according to IDC, will see 11,000 new jobs and $4bn in revenue during the first year of Windows Vista.

So far, New York – the location state for next week’s Windows Vista launch - tops the pile of net beneficiaries, with 16,000 new jobs and $7bn in revenue. New York, also prosecuting during that infamous antitrust case, agreed to the Government's settlement.

Rounding out the list of four states surveyed so far by IDC is New Jersey, which will see 5,000 new jobs created and $2.5bn in revenue. New Jersey has had no axes to grind.®

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