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back to article Microsoft downloads drive by Dell site

Dell has secured download reselling rights for Microsoft Office, the first time Microsoft has allowed a third party to do this. That's what Dell says, at any rate. The deal looks like a toe-dipping exercise on both sides. For starters, Dell is a download minnow, only opening its download store in January, with lines from McAfee …

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why bother?

But why would you bother? You are unlikely to get major discounts unless you had your entire software bundle coming from them. If they are hunting end users then they would surely purchase via the click to activate and no self respecting loon would go looking at Dell to buy software out of the blue.

Seems a niche area for them really.

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Erh...

...download MS Office of ££$$€€, be locked into on vendor, barely comprehensible file formats and rife for viruses. Or download OpenOffice for free, be vendor neutral, free to use (just about) whatever file format you chose.

Gosh. Hard one that.

(Not)

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Erh...

>>

...download MS Office of ££$$€€, be locked into on vendor, barely comprehensible file formats and rife for viruses. Or download OpenOffice for free, be vendor neutral, free to use (just about) whatever file format you chose.

Gosh. Hard one that.

(Not)

<<

Like it or not, even MS Office 2000 is far more user friendly than the latest OpenOffice. Take the situation with my wife, for example. She's back in college and has to write reports. OpenOffice insists on reformatting her text to the point that creating a simple 2-page report takes easily a few hours because, to quote "it just doesn't look right". In either print or on-screen.

In Word, it takes 25-40 minutes, tops, for the same details; and that's mostly due to her typing speed. Why? Because it just works.

That's something the open source community desperately needs to get through it's thick skulls.

Users DON'T CARE about platform lock-in or, sometimes, even price

Users DO CARE about a product being usable and stress-free.

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Anonymous Coward

The first?

Didn't Fasthosts offer downloadable Office a while back?

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Download just isnt right for this type of software

I can understand people buying games and utilities on a download service since the most you normally would waste is £30-£50. with normally ambigious terms and conditions and the odds of people dropping a part of a business (normally stuffing all the users in the process). I cant see that many people jumping at the chance to spend £500+ when they will probally only be able to use it for a limted time.

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@mego

"it just doesn't look right" - Years of brainwashing having used MS products?

I have to agree, I use OO more often than MSO at work and I have to admit that I always have the nagging feeling that something just doesn't look right, but I know it's me and what I am used to, years of using MSO, I expect things to look a certain way.

Sadly you're right though, the user's perception of a product is far more important than any other consideration, even if that product may be technically better or worse, cost more or less, makes no odds. When you buy car, you may find that you enjoy driving the £9,000 Peugeot as opposed to the £50k BMW, one just feels better than the other.

When my missus moved over from Windows to Mac, we bought MSO for Mac and she hated it, the buttons are not quite right, the formatting is not quite there. Ended up with 5 months of XP VM running MSO, before finally moving to use OO on Mac! Same company, same product and even after tweaking, almost same look, but MSO on Mac didn't feel right, even OO still doesn't "feel" quite right, but it's nearer to MSO on Windows! Luckily it was student edition of MSO/Mac for her college course, else I would have been severely out of pocket at full retail!

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