Feeds

Microsoft splashes big bucks to blast Google Apps

Latest ad campaign smacks of desperation

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

Microsoft is spending big bucks to convince computer users that Google Apps are a risky bet with a new series of ads featuring Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo star Rob Schneider and disgraced athlete and former jailbird Pete Rose – neither of whom presumably come cheap.

Both adverts push Microsoft's contention that Google Apps can't handle Office apps formatting, and therefore using them is risky. "You lose big, to the tune of your wallet, your credibility and your upcoming promotion," Schneider warns as prospective gambler.

Pete Rose, the baseball star barred from the Hall of Fame for his gambling while a player and a manager (and who was later jailed for tax evasion) declares Google Apps are too big a risk for him.

In the second advert Schneider plays a short, scruffy, bespectacled basketball player getting beaten down by a tall, black player representing Redmond's code.

Schneider promises he has some moves, gets pwned on the court, admits "I'm not exactly Microsoft Office," and says he's deficient in a lot of areas and dependent on the internet to work.

Both adverts have been posted on Google's YouTube website, which apparently Microsoft has no problem with.

Redmond reinforced the anti-Apps message with an extended blog post by Jake Zborowski, product manager for Microsoft Office, highlighting formatting failures that Google suffers when trying to display Office documents.

Microsoft Office v Google Apps advert

No stereotyping here, no, none at all

Google's formatting misses things such as text boxes, graphs, columns, and watermarking, and Zborowski said that the problems also occur if you try and use Google's QuickOffice on an iPad or its Chrome Office viewer to read Microsoft data.

Google declined to make any official comment on the advertising campaign, but people familiar with the matter said that there were always going to be some formatting problems with Microsoft's Office suite, as Redmond has spent the last 10 years packing it with gizmos and display code for a whole variety of purposes.

Trying to match them all in a cloud market doesn't make sense, the thinking goes, because you'd never get all of them – and if you did, Redmond could tweak its code to cause more formatting issues. There's no suggestion that Redmond is taking the latter course, but it wouldn't be the first time it has been accused of coding against the opposition.

All of this occurs against the background of Microsoft's plans to translate home users, who would normally be Office buyers, into consumers who merely rent it. In January, the pricing system Redmond revealed showed a heavy financial incentive to move away from boxed product – although Microsoft has said it's not going cloud-only, like Adobe.

Adverts like this current crop are aimed at buyers who use Microsoft Office at work but who might settle for the free use of Google Apps for their personal computing, or even open source alternatives such as OpenOffice and LibreOffice. They back up Microsoft-supported legal challenges to Google Apps and a tough fight for corporate contracts in the cloud arena.

Whether this will all be enough to change people's minds remains to be seen, but it's clear that Redmond is in for the long haul when it comes to attacking some areas of the Chocolate Factory's output. El Reg just isn't sure the current tactics of using a dishonorable cheat and a cinematic man-whore is the way to do it. ®

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

More from The Register

next story
That dreaded syncing feeling: Will Microsoft EVER fix OneDrive?
Microsoft's long history of broken Windows sync
Mozilla, EFF, Cisco back free-as-in-FREE-BEER SSL cert authority
Let’s Encrypt to give HTTPS-everywhere a boost in 2015
SLURP! Flick your TONGUE around our LOLLIPOP – Google
Android 5 is coming – IF you're lucky enough to have the right gadget
Nokia's N1 fondleslab's HIDDEN BRILLIANCE: The 'Z Launcher'
Sugarcoating Android's Lollipop makes tab easier to swallow
Bug fixes! Get your APPLE BUG FIXES! iOS and OS X updates right here!
Yosemite fixes Wi-Fi hiccup, older iOS devices get performance boost
Facebook, working on Facebook at Work, works on Facebook. At Work
You don't want your cat or drunk pics at the office
Soz, web devs: Google snatches its Wallet off the table
Killing off web service in 3 months... but app-happy bonkers are fine
Meet Windows 10's new UI for OneDrive – also known as File Explorer
New preview build continues Redmond's retreat to the desktop
Microsoft: Your Linux Docker containers are now OURS to command
New tool lets admins wrangle Linux apps from Windows
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Simplify SSL certificate management across the enterprise
Simple steps to take control of SSL across the enterprise, and recommendations for a management platform for full visibility and single-point of control for these Certificates.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.