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Technology Stocks
Will SUNW bring down MSFT?
An SI Board Since July 1997
Posts SubjectMarks Bans Symbol
878 3 0 JAVA
Emcee:  Dan Guinan Type:  Unmoderated
Many threads discuss how Microsoft will be consuming Netscape's business, Oracle's business, IBM's business, etc. etc...

Everyone seems to love discussing how the Redmond juggernaut will consume the market share of the other major players in the computer-technology industry. But, truth be told, Novel and Apple are the only two large companies that Microsoft has ever done this to (this is not for lack of trying, however).

What is conspicuously absent from these discussions, however, is the very real threat that companies such as Sun Microsystems pose to Microsoft.

Sun grew to it's current fortune by selling X-Terminals (identical in all ways to the WinTerms that Microsoft is advocating for 1998 - 10 years after Sun was making millions on them), then workstations and finally large scale systems and supercomputers.

With the advent of the NC, Sun is returning to it's roots. It will be selling low cost network computing devices in market segments that it understands and grew up in. The WinTerm strategy of Microsoft's is pure silliness to Sun, who sold similar devices 10 years ago. Sun is not concerned about WinTerms competing with NC's in this segment (which it understands much better than Microsoft). Well, everyone knows how much damage Microsoft will sustain if NC's start moving into the enterprise in high volume.

On a separate front, while Microsoft is trying to convince the world that NT is ready to battle with Unix, Sun has been quietly building a class of departmental servers to replace NT. This is a segment of the market that has traditionally been occupied by Novel, and more recently by NT. The first Sun computers in this space will ship in August. Sun has priced these systems cheaper than NT, they can interoperate with Microsoft networking protocols, Novel networking protocols, etc.. They are based on rugged tried and tested Sun enterprise technology and are designed to snap right into existing Microsoft networks. In fact, these systems can be installed onto the same commodity equipment that NT was installed on (i.e. Intel based PC's).

The attempt to foray into Sun's client-server market-place is being met with failure after failure due to the low reliability and performance characteristics of the current incarnation of NT as a server.

Meanwhile, the Java programming language from Sun has captured the mindshare of the development community. With this (very significant) movement of developer mindshare comes applications that are written to run in any environment. In other words, lock-down to Microsoft products is being eliminated at an alarming rate.

Invisibly and behind the scenes, Sun is growing it's software development staff at very high rates. It is worth noting that Sun has more employees than Microsoft, and similar revenues (but nowhere near the stock price).

It appears to me that Sun is positioning itself very cleverly to cause massive damage to the Microsoft empire. With allies such as IBM and Oracle, technologies such as Java, the Java NC and Solaris based solutions that are cheaper more reliable replacements for NT as departmental servers, Sun may have a chance.

At Microsoft, executives like to joke about a captain Ahab club in the Silicon Valley, where membership is achieved by Silicon Valley executives trying and failing to kill Mobey Dick (Microsoft).

What they don't seem to realize is that there is a spear in the hands of one Silicon Valley company (wielded by Scott McNealy?) that has Mobey Dick's name on it.

Sun may not kill Microsoft, but my bet is that they will tame and domesticate it.

-Dan

RELAVENT COMPANIES:
SUNW, MSFT, INTC, ORCL, IBM, HP, AAPL, NOVL, NSCP, SGI
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878 New Recommendation We have initiated coverage of Sun Microsystems, Inc. with aResearch Week-11/22/1998
877 To all: Sun takes early round in fight with Microsoft over Java. Tuesday Novetom jones-11/17/1998
876 Oops!...MSFT Goofs with Web-TV. Another $400 million down the drain? techweb.cheryl williamson-9/18/1998
875 FYI. CNBC will be interviewing Ed Zander live within the next 1/2 hour. ACV ACV-9/8/1998
874 That article doesn't say anything except how MSFT like GE, GM, Exxon, and mTheRainmaker-9/8/1998
873 To all: Andy say it ain't so. Where would SUNW be now if Andy had a backbtom jones-8/26/1998
872 Thanks for the link. -DylanDylan-3/25/1998
871java.sun.com and click on the "Third-party ports" NolanNolan Toone-3/25/1998
870 Does anyone know if Sun is planning a version of its java compiler for the new Dylan-3/25/1998
869 To all: Business Wire news. Watch out msft "Here come the judge". biztom jones-3/24/1998
868 I just got back from the first day at JavaOne. It was packed. The M$ booth.....Nolan Toone-3/24/1998
867 David, I think the judge was saving his ruling (this one) for the opening of Jcheryl williamson-3/24/1998
866 Tuesday March 24, 7:17 pm Eastern Time Judge orders Microsoft to remove Java loLazlo Pierce-3/24/1998
865 David, Do you have any more details?cheryl williamson-3/24/1998
864 Yes the thought is that is also a loss for SUNW. Think of all the free advert.John F. Dowd-3/24/1998
863 Just heard on CNBC that MSFT lost the round to SUNW, about being allowed to useLazlo Pierce-3/24/1998
862 See, today Apple just mentioned the word Java and shares rise $2 =) Doubt that Dylan-3/24/1998
861 Sun Casts Windows In New Light Time to buy ctxs (03/22/98; 11:42 aAlbert Levulis-3/23/1998
860 <<Why does microsoft use Java at all if they don't want their sofDylan-3/23/1998
859 The legality issue doesn't change. HP created their own implementation, buBearded One-3/23/1998
858 To all: Questions about Java,Hewlett-Packard, microsoft and lawsuit. Hewltom jones-3/22/1998
857 Karun.. Holiday greetings, I am not sure what has prompted the lack of activiNormandi-12/13/1997
856 What happened to this thread. Has the thanksgiving turkey had some effect or soJoe S Pack-12/13/1997
855 Microsoft woos Java developers to Redmond By Deborah Gage, Sm@rt Reseller NovemNormandi-11/26/1997
854 The DOJ won't do a darn thing. Microsoft may pull their liscense for WindowScotsman-11/25/1997
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