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Microsoft outside the US

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  • User profile image
    Cream​Filling512

    It doesn't matter where software gets made from a logistics standpoint.  But it does matter if you're going to spread development across the world and lose the ability to walk into the office of X dev and talk about whatever.  Everyone who works at Microsoft came from somewhere, often from all around the world, this makes it more diverse.

  • User profile image
    CKurt

    ZippyV said:
    CKurt said:
    *snip*

    Doesn't matter how 'bad' Apple. Their iPod was faster available in Europe than the Zune. Same with iTunes.

    Well the Zune was never available in Europe so of course Apple is faster. But I do agree that most things Apple released recently did get a 'world' release. Like the new iPhone. It's okay there is some timedifference (like a month or 3). It people know it's comming they don't care that much.

     

    Like the new Xbox, that is something Microsoft did good. Releasing it in June in the US and it came to Belgium on 15th of July. This is the way it is sepossed to be. (refering to 'Microsoft did good' is a bit wrong here because it was the Xbox team and microsoft is really big but you know what I mean).

     

    The Zune was never released in Europe because "It would cost to much to bring it to market compaired to what can be profitted from it" (Heard this from an official Microsoft Employee, and he's probbaly right).

     

    Rumor has it WP7 will be first launched in Europe and then in the US. This might be a good start! Also, the Windows Live Beta went out in European languages (including dutch) because they know it is used a lot over here. Thats good to.

     

    But other software and 'services' not so much. I guess it has to do with DRM and copyright. The Zune Video service could be booming right now if it had the content and was promoted the right way. But it's not on Xbox by default (you have to download it) and it is not on 'Internet TV' in media center. The local website is a mess. Even film trailers aren't accesible. Here I was thinking we look at the same movies in Europe (might be at different time but still).

     

    Zune and Media Center are a mess in Europe. I really hope they get there act togetter for the WP7 launch because otherwize it might fail misserbly.

     

    Disclaimer: Somehow I always get really frustrated when on this subject...

     

     

  • User profile image
    CKurt

    CreamFilling512 said:

    It doesn't matter where software gets made from a logistics standpoint.  But it does matter if you're going to spread development across the world and lose the ability to walk into the office of X dev and talk about whatever.  Everyone who works at Microsoft came from somewhere, often from all around the world, this makes it more diverse.

    It matters because if you go home as a developper and notice "Damn it would be cool if I could do that" or "It's a shame the local public broadcasting agency is not available" or "Who the hell translated this?".

     

    If you don't have the troubles at home (and in the US you don't have them because they work closely with partners) you will be less likely to provide a decent sollution to the problem. Somehow a developer living in the US working on a product for Brussels will more quickly say 'Its good enough' or 'It's sort of what we have here'. Especcially if you are working with local CONTENT you might have something 'nobody will every watch this' , but it might be the most popular show in Brussels for all you know.

     

    Location matters because of localisation. For example the many many point and comma buggs that can be found in Bing Maps working with longitude and latitude. (here € 12,450 is  12 euro and 45 cents , not 12450 thousand euro)

  • User profile image
    Cream​Filling512

    CKurt said:
    CreamFilling512 said:
    *snip*

    It matters because if you go home as a developper and notice "Damn it would be cool if I could do that" or "It's a shame the local public broadcasting agency is not available" or "Who the hell translated this?".

     

    If you don't have the troubles at home (and in the US you don't have them because they work closely with partners) you will be less likely to provide a decent sollution to the problem. Somehow a developer living in the US working on a product for Brussels will more quickly say 'Its good enough' or 'It's sort of what we have here'. Especcially if you are working with local CONTENT you might have something 'nobody will every watch this' , but it might be the most popular show in Brussels for all you know.

     

    Location matters because of localisation. For example the many many point and comma buggs that can be found in Bing Maps working with longitude and latitude. (here € 12,450 is  12 euro and 45 cents , not 12450 thousand euro)

    Sure but it's a bug.  I'm sure the design is that its supposed to support all currency formats and has complete globalization.  MS platforms usually have pretty good globalization support, look at .NET's CultureInfo for example.  Have you ever seen Windows or Office in a right-to-left script?  The entire UI gets mirrored, and thats just for Hebrew and Arabic.  That's going to pretty drastic lengths for localization IMO.

  • User profile image
    CKurt

    CreamFilling512 said:
    CKurt said:
    *snip*

    Sure but it's a bug.  I'm sure the design is that its supposed to support all currency formats and has complete globalization.  MS platforms usually have pretty good globalization support, look at .NET's CultureInfo for example.  Have you ever seen Windows or Office in a right-to-left script?  The entire UI gets mirrored, and thats just for Hebrew and Arabic.  That's going to pretty drastic lengths for localization IMO.

    I know it's a bug. But it's a bug that only surfaces when somebody uses a computer over here. I'm pretty sure it would be fixed by now (reported it for the first time in februari of this year) when it would have been a problem in the US and people at the office where confronted with it every day like I am here...

     

    But for content and partnerships like they have in the US with broadcasting agencies location matters.

  • User profile image
    Charles

    ZippyV said:

    Or speech recognition in Windows and Office.

     

    Microsoft doesn't spend any money on development or marketing in Europe.

    This is completely untrue. It's not as simple as you think for us to release the exact same things anywhere in the world. The US has its own set of business rules and regulations, as does Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Spain, Portugal, Greece, etc... It's pretty amazing that we are able to navigate these complex regulatory and cultural seas as well as we do, Is there room for improvement? Of course there is. Your frustration is an obvious indication of this fact.

     

    C

  • User profile image
    CKurt

    Charles said:
    ZippyV said:
    *snip*

    This is completely untrue. It's not as simple as you think for us to release the exact same things anywhere in the world. The US has its own set of business rules and regulations, as does Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Spain, Portugal, Greece, etc... It's pretty amazing that we are able to navigate these complex regulatory and cultural seas as well as we do, Is there room for improvement? Of course there is. Your frustration is an obvious indication of this fact.

     

    C

    Charles, is there any chance to interview the Zune or Media center team about the problems they have lisensing stuff or setting up partnerships in Europe?

     

    My blog post clearly indicates 2 points that bring up questions. Why is internet TV not available in Europe? (at least zune content and some public content) and Will Zune Social be completely rolled out to Europe for WP7?

  • User profile image
    Charles

    CKurt said:
    Charles said:
    *snip*

    Charles, is there any chance to interview the Zune or Media center team about the problems they have lisensing stuff or setting up partnerships in Europe?

     

    My blog post clearly indicates 2 points that bring up questions. Why is internet TV not available in Europe? (at least zune content and some public content) and Will Zune Social be completely rolled out to Europe for WP7?

    How about I forward your questions to the right folks. There is no need for an interview, right?
    C

  • User profile image
    CKurt

    Charles said:
    CKurt said:
    *snip*

    How about I forward your questions to the right folks. There is no need for an interview, right?
    C

    That would be fine to. I just like seeing people Tongue Out Thanks again Charles.

  • User profile image
    ZippyV

    CKurt said:
    Charles said:
    *snip*

    Charles, is there any chance to interview the Zune or Media center team about the problems they have lisensing stuff or setting up partnerships in Europe?

     

    My blog post clearly indicates 2 points that bring up questions. Why is internet TV not available in Europe? (at least zune content and some public content) and Will Zune Social be completely rolled out to Europe for WP7?

    http://www.zdnet.be/news/111150/microsoft-klaagt-over-belgische-breedbandlimieten/

     

     

  • User profile image
    ZippyV

    Charles said:
    CKurt said:
    *snip*

    How about I forward your questions to the right folks. There is no need for an interview, right?
    C

    Put Steve Ballmer in CC. I think the problem is not only with the product teams.

  • User profile image
    ZippyV

    2 other examples of neglected products in Europe: Bing and the online features of the Xbox 360.

  • User profile image
    Cream​Filling512

    ZippyV said:

    2 other examples of neglected products in Europe: Bing and the online features of the Xbox 360.

    Don't you guys get Sky support on Xbox 360?  That's not available in the US.

  • User profile image
    ZippyV

    CreamFilling512 said:
    ZippyV said:
    *snip*

    Don't you guys get Sky support on Xbox 360?  That's not available in the US.

    Never heard of Sky.

  • User profile image
    daSmirnov

    CreamFilling512 said:
    ZippyV said:
    *snip*

    Don't you guys get Sky support on Xbox 360?  That's not available in the US.

    In Britain we get Sky, (pay for satellite TV for those not in the know), but we still need to pay extra to get it on the Xbox 360, even if we have a Sky subscription.

     

    I'd much rather have BBC iPlayer on the Xbox 360.  Luckily both the Wii and PS3 support it instead.  But it's still annoying to turn the PS3 on just to stream some TV off iPlayer when the Xbox is used for everything else including Media Center and recorded TV.

  • User profile image
    Bas

    CreamFilling512 said:
    ZippyV said:
    *snip*

    Don't you guys get Sky support on Xbox 360?  That's not available in the US.

    That's only in Britain.

  • User profile image
    CKurt

    ZippyV said:

    Well that is one could thing that has happened. The fact the 2 main online providers in belgium (Telenet and Belgacom) updated there limits, in the period of may 2010 and july 2010, was (partly) because of Microsoft. I know this sounds like fanboyisme, but I have this from a Microsoft Benelux representative. (being a Microsoft Student Partner got me that connection)

     

    Just a bit of topic. The setup is pretty crasy. Telenet also provides Digital Cable subscription with a video rental service build in (much like TiVo in the US is presume). That service works over an ethernet cable plugged in to the back of the set-op-box. It runs trough a switch they provide AND the cable router they provide makes sure the Set-Up box is given a PUBLIC ip-address. So if you have cable and internet from Telenet you get 2 public IP addresses assigned to you. One for computing and one for the set-op-box. Here's the kicker, the public ip for the set-up box has no bandwith limitation to make sure you can order as much movies and content from there service, and the computers public ip (converted to multiple computers use via my own NAT router) does have a limit of 60GB per month. That is up from 30GB per month since the first of July 2010. Do they think we are stupid? Why would i not just plug my NAT routers WAN port into the public IP ment for my set-up-box? That would lift up my limits (altough they might detect the fact that the public IP does not have the right MAC address). But still....

     

    Anyway, Microsoft brought up that limit because they want to launch the Zune service. But just so you know, the most exciting title on the Zune Movie service for Xbox in Belgium currently is 'Sherlock Holmes'....

  • User profile image
    CKurt

    daSmirnov said:
    CreamFilling512 said:
    *snip*

    In Britain we get Sky, (pay for satellite TV for those not in the know), but we still need to pay extra to get it on the Xbox 360, even if we have a Sky subscription.

     

    I'd much rather have BBC iPlayer on the Xbox 360.  Luckily both the Wii and PS3 support it instead.  But it's still annoying to turn the PS3 on just to stream some TV off iPlayer when the Xbox is used for everything else including Media Center and recorded TV.

    Indeed, there needs to be a better connection with Public National Broadcasters like BBC , VRT , NOS , FR1....  Al these broadcasters currently have some kind of online offering. Microsoft needs to contact those broadcasters and make them aware of the posibilities with the Xbox. The posibilities that are not tide to local set-up-boxes proriatary stuff. Develop the BBC iPlayer for Xbox and use the same software all over Europe! (if they change there license because not everything right now works abroad).

     

    If microsoft is serieus about Media Center becomming the Living Room hub and want to take over the set-up-boxes they need to:

    • Provide the same Local stuff all the vender specific boxes have right now
    • Provide more stuff from other countries
    • Bring decent Movie titles to Zune Marketplace
    • Promote Media Center more via television
    • Create deals with local cable venders to run Media Center on there set-up-boxes instead of the stupid slow java interfaces! (at least in Belgium). This means the cable vender most have a way to show his logo inside medea center as a start. Because these venders don't want to loose there presence in the living room households. That is the big task

    It seems Microsoft want to get Media center of the ground (they did announce a TV with build in media center PC , and some tv's with media center extender capabilities). So go that extra mile and deliver real value.

     

    Also, they need to give a clear signal. Also, what is MediaRoom? Is the Media Center's sucessor , or the version for professionals like BBC to use? It's confusing... I'm sure if one country has a complete experience end to end, lots and lots of broadcatsers will want to get there content to the platform. It's just, they need to get the ball rolling...

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