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Can Sun Outshine Microsoft Office?

Techstination feature for Tuesday, May 21, 2002

Can Sun outshine Microsoft Office? Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. Microsoft Office has captured about 95 of the market. Sun Microsystems hopes to make a dent in that with the release of StarOffice 6.0...

"We're essentially taking this release to enterprises around the world and offering them what we consider to be a choice in the market."

Mike Rogers, Sun's VP for desktop and office productivity. The chief selling point... is price. StarOffice 6.0 is being sold stand alone for 76 dollars... with enterprise licenses fifty dollars and less. There's even a free version, minus some bells and whistles available at For the money, StarOffice is pretty impressive, allowing you to open and save documents in Microsoft compatible formats. How much business does Sun think it can take away...

"Well we haven't stated any particular market share goals. Gartner has recently issued a report stating that in the next couple of years they expect us to take ten percent of Microsoft's market share. If we're at all successful here I think that could prove to be conservative."

The package, which runs on Windows, Solaris and Linux includes applications for word processing, spreadsheets, presentations, database and graphics. What's missing is a calendar and address book tool like Microsoft's Outlook. For students and teachers... Microsoft's discounted version of Office may be a better bet. Sun's main success may come from those who simply want an alternative choice. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin