Will Microsoft make Windows free to defeat Android?

Today in Open Source: Windows Phone and Windows RT for free? Plus: A Linux powered crock-pot, and Calibre 1.18 released

Windows Phone and Windows RT for free?

I missed this story back in December, but I think it's worth taking a look at even now. The Verge reported that Microsoft is considering giving device makers Windows Phone and Windows RT for free.

Microsoft is considering making Windows Phone and Windows RT available free of charge to device makers. Sources familiar with Microsoft’s plans have revealed to The Verge that free future versions are under serious consideration by OS chief Terry Myerson. We understand the plans aren’t fully set in stone, but they’re part of broader changes Myerson is planning for the future of Windows.

We understand that any decision to axe the license fees for Windows Phone and Windows RT would be backed by a push for revenue from Microsoft’s apps and services.

More at The VergeHat Tip: Foss Force

This can only be viewed as a seriously desperate attempt by Microsoft to grasp at any straw left within reach. Google and Apple have both hit Microsoft hard by providing free operating systems, and Microsoft is flailing around trying to figure out how to become relevant again.

I doubt that making Windows Phone or Windows RT free will help much. Neither product has enough appeal to dethrone Android in the short term, and Microsoft doesn't seem nimble enough to come up with a new version that offers features that Android doesn't already provide.

Microsoft is truly a day late, and a dollar short.

My how times have changed! Remember when Microsoft seemed invulnerable back in the 90s? Those days are long, long gone and they're never coming back. The folks at Microsoft should give a listen to the Bruce Springsteen song "Glory Days," it sums up their situation quite well.

Here's a sampling of the lyrics:

Now I think I'm going down to the well tonight and I'm going to drink till I get my fill And I hope when I get old I don't sit around thinking about it but I probably will Yeah, just sitting back trying to recapture a little of the glory of, well time slips away and leaves you with nothing mister but boring stories of glory days

And the full song:

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