Microsoft to release free, ad-supported applications

July 31, 2007

Microsoft to release free, ad-supported applications Microsoft’s vice president, Satya Nadella, in an interview with Mary Jo Foley from ZDNet, may have slipped some information about Microsoft Works 9.0. The new version is said to be free, funded by advertisements.

We all wondered what Microsoft was up to when it filed a patent for an advertising system that searches your hard drive for “contextual data” in order to show the most relevant ads. But it seems now that it could be the start of a wide range of free, ad-supported Microsoft applications.

Nadella told ZDNet that the free version of works is just “the first of the ad-funded software we are going to do.”

Apparently, the Microsoft VP had thought that an ad-funded version of Microsoft works was already released, but the product can’t be found anywhere and everyone at Microsoft has a zipped lip. A little late for keeping secrets, but we’ve seen it a thousand times; it’s what corporations do.

Of course, we all expected Microsoft to release something to rival Google Docs & Spreadsheets and Open Office; there are simply too many replacements for Microsoft products that are available for free, some of which I feel actually perform better than its MS counterpart.

We’d certainly be more excited if Microsoft would make an ad-supported version of its Office suite, but it’s nice to see Microsoft throwing us a bone every now and then.

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