Is Microsoft biased against emerging markets?

Microsoft has been applying for patents for hardware-based license security and Digital Rights Management. But with their applications come an explicit statement on piracy’s being more rampant in developing economies.

Especially in emerging markets, software piracy poses a fundamental threat to software companies. While the cost of duplicating software is near zero, the cost of duplicating hardware provides a significant deterrent to piracy.

Is the bias uncalled-for? Perhaps if Windows didn’t cost PhP 5,000 apiece, and Office upwards of PhP 10,000, then software piracy won’t be so rampant here in the Philippines. Unlike our western counterparts, licensing costs of most software titles are well beyond our means!

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  • My answer is yes. And I think that the reason why Microsoft is biased against emerging markets is because they can’t get any money from them.

    Look at how Bill Gates criticized the $100 laptop.

    Look at how Microsoft Vista is requiring hardware upgrades

  • wrencelot

    if that concerns you, wait till you read the article where someone applied and hear this, been approved for a patent to have a royalty in multimedia files, including flash and ajax, that whenever someone tries to access them over the net, users have to pay a royalty fee.. in other words, if pinoytechblog is using flash for the site and i access pinoytechblog, both pinoytechblog and i would have to pay something as a royalty fee.. ive read it somewhere in digg.. ive lost track of the article but the one who applied for that patent is

  • I would’ve gone for what the French parliament was proposing–for digital content to be subsidized by users fees to be charged against all broadband users. In that case, everyone would’ve been happy–the users who can now download all the digital media they want at a very minimal, flat fee (charged along with the connection), the recording/movie industry who get their big chunk of the revenue pie, and the people who develop software who track the downloads (i.e. Snocap, formerly known as Napster).

    Sadly, the proposal was turned down. And the RIAA/MPAA was rallying against it (they’d rather sue people to their last pennies).

  • Monsolo: I read about the hardware requirements for Vista. Ugh.

    JAngelo: I think that it’s a thing beyond pricing. Part of me thinks that a lot justify piracy because of the price of software. In a sense, that might be true and yet if you also think about it, there might be other factors like cultural stuff 🙂