The role of Intellectual Property in Microsoft’s business strategy is extremely important. IP is defined as: For an innovator, Intellectual Property means any concept, device, design or invention, conceived or constructed by the innovator over which s/he wishes to claim ‘ownership’ the same way s/he would for any other type of ‘property’. ‘Rights’ imply that s/he wishes to establish a form of a ‘prior claim’ to the Intellectual Property so that s/he will have the right to use it. In fact, the ‘rights’ do not as such give him/her the right to use it but, in fact, prevent others from so doing. (Engineering Management II 2010)
Microsoft has created some innovative and original software, computer components, and even ideas. Before Windows was created by Bill Gates all computers had to be accessed through a command prompt, but with Windows, a computer user is taken to a screen with icons to programs. Now the majority of computers, other than Apple’s Macintosh, run a version of Windows as an operating system (OS). Windows is compatible with more computers than Apple’s UNIX OS. Whereas Apple software is only compatible with Apple products, Windows can be loaded onto Dell, Compaq, Gateway, IBM, and other computers. Without the protection of IP copyrights, trademarks, and licensing of their software, computer components, and ideas, Microsoft would lose money to shareware and other companies taking their ideas and marketing them as their own. Microsoft has a legal department that applies for IP rights so that their ideas will not be used by other companies without permission. Thus IP and protecting IP of Microsoft products is the main business strategy for Microsoft. Without IP protection Microsoft would not be in business today.
The major benefits to Talkweb are the reduction in the cost of development and time. The photograph to cartoon technology would have taken years, not months if Talkweb had spent the time to develop the technology.
Engineering Management II. (2010). Lecture 6: Intellectual Property.
Microsoft. (2008). Talkweb Casestudy. Microsoft. Online.
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