On Wednesday, Bill Gates, Microsoft’s chairman, revealed the company’s newest operating system, Vista, showcasing unique features meant to challenge its major competitors, Reuters reports.
The new upgrade displayed a brand new interface with 3-D scrolling between translucent windows, allowing users to view images and information beneath. Vista is scheduled to ship during the second half of 2006, and will include a new version of Windows Media Center that’s compatible with high definition programming and an Internet Explorer with improved security features.
Vista also contains a search function that scans content on users’ PCs and networks. The function is meant to slash the virtual monopoly Google holds in the world of Web search. Microsoft also unveiled MTV Network’s Urge Music Service, which will be built into Vista’s Windows Media Center in an attempt to gain traction in the digital music industry, where Apple and its iPod reign supreme.
At the International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, where Vista was unveiled, Gates unexpectedly downplayed the competition between his company and Google, saying that Microsoft has more to fear from Apple and IBM.
“People tend to get overfocused on one of our competitors,” Gates said. “The biggest company in the computer industry by far is IBM. IBM has always been our biggest competitor. The press just doesn’t like to write about that.”
By Al Sacco