Dec 6, 2013
"It’s pretty much a brick," says Pawn Stars’ Rick Harrison as he rejects a Samsung Chromebook brought in by an actor playing a customer. Microsoft really doesn’t want you buying this thing.Read Article >
But why? Just how big of a threat are Chromebooks, Google’s oft-ridiculed web-only laptops, to Microsoft’s core business?
Nov 26, 2013
it's been nearly two years since Microsoft started pushing a staunchly anti-Google message through its "Scroogled" campaign — since then, Google's biggest products like Gmail, Google Search, Android, Chrome, and Google Docs have all come under fire as being inferior and less secure than Microsoft's offerings. (Not to mention these clever mugs and t-shirts.) Now, Microsoft has yet another target: the humble Chromebook. In a new video on the Scroogled website, Microsoft calls in Rick Harrison from reality TV show Pawn Stars to appraise a seller's Chromebook. Her suggestion that the computer is worth anything elicites a hearty chuckle from Harrison, who then goes on to say "when you're not connected, it's pretty much a brick."Read Article >
He then notes that a "traditional" PC uses built-in applications — like Microsoft Office, of course. Apparently, unless a computer has Windows and Office, it's not a "real" laptop in Microsoft's mind — hardly a surprising viewpoint, but one pretty far from the truth at this point. There's little doubt that Chrome OS is dependent on the internet, something Google hasn't exactly hidden since introducing the computers, but there's finally enough offline support for core services like Gmail, Calendar, Drive and Docs, and offline music, photos and books.
Nov 22, 2013
Yesterday, Microsoft started selling hats, mugs, T-shirts, and hoodies with a distinct anti-Google message, bearing phrases like "keep calm while we steal your data" alongside the Chrome browser logo. They're the latest wave of Microsoft's long-running Scroogled campaign, designed to frighten people away from using Google services.Read Article >
How does Google feel about Microsoft's clothing line? The company appears to be taking it in stride. "Microsoft's latest venture comes as no surprise; competition in the wearables space really is heating up," a spokesperson told The Verge.
Aug 16, 2013
The gloves are off: Microsoft and Google find themselves battling in more product areas than ever while fighting a very public war of words. The latest spat has led Google to block a Microsoft-developed YouTube app for Windows Phone, despite a promise to collaborate between the two companies. In the past, Microsoft has launched public campaigns directly against Google: there's Gmail man, newspaper ads, Scroogled, and even an anti-Google Apps "Googlighting" campaign. Google's moves are less public, with curiously timed product changes, methods intended to block Windows Phone users, and the occasional sniping comment from Larry Page or Eric Schmidt. Behind closed doors, both companies are forced to work together for the benefit of their mutual customers. What's really going on, though? Why doesn't Google want a Windows Phone YouTube app? We've spoken to sources at Microsoft and Google to find out.Read Article >
The most recent issue began over two years ago when Microsoft alleged that Google was preventing it from "offering consumers a fully featured YouTube app for the Windows Phone." At the time, Microsoft shipped a YouTube app for Windows Phone that simply redirected users to the mobile version of the service. Microsoft wanted more. Earlier this year the company voiced similar concerns, but in May it decided to do something about it, releasing a full YouTube app for Windows Phone with functionality that rivaled the official apps on Android and iOS. There was a slight problem, though: Microsoft had reverse-engineered Google's YouTube APIs and created an app that lacked ads and allowed users to download videos for offline viewing.
May 16, 2013
Microsoft and Google have been locked in a war of words over a YouTube Windows Phone app, but in the midst of the arguments a new Scroogled ad has emerged. Designed to be an internal-only video, a copy has somehow managed to find its way onto the web right in the middle of Google's I/O developer conference.Read Article >
Unlike Microsoft's previous attempts, this directly parodies Google's own Chrome ads with a bouncing ball tracking how Google allegedly targets you with ads. It's identical to Google's own Chrome "Now Everywhere" ad, set to the same music and style. A Microsoft spokesperson confirmed to The Verge that the ad is genuine, stating it's "an internal video that was leaked."
Apr 9, 2013
Microsoft's anti-Google campaign is getting a fresh revival this week with a new focus on Google's Android app store. After directly attacking Gmail and Google Shopping, Microsoft is now attempting to spread fear over Google's policy of supplying the name, email address, and neighborhood of users who purchase apps on Google Play. In two fresh videos posted to the Scroogled site, Microsoft attempts to convince users to switch to Bing and Windows Phone over Android.Read Article >
"If you can't trust their app store, maybe you can't trust them for anything," says a narrator in one particular video, suggesting users try Bing. Another focuses on trying to push Windows Phones. The campaign centers on Google's policy of providing basic information to developers. Some have expressed concern over the practice and argued that Google should disclose that your name, email, and neighborhood is provided to each app developer once you purchase an app.
Mar 4, 2013
Microsoft is ending its Scroogled TV advertising campaign attacking Google's security practices. Public radio and TV station KQED reports that Microsoft senior director of online services Stefan Weitz said "that part is about finished," referring to the TV ads that lambasted the search company and reminded some of political attack ads. The Scroogled website is still up, however, and Weitz's remarks do not necessarily mean that Microsoft is abandoning the tagline and the message of the campaign altogether.Read Article >
Stefan Weitz did offer KQED a few more details on the origin of the attack ads, however. He says that the idea first came up from an opinion poll by the Roper Center for Public Opinion Research that found seven out of ten didn't "know that this practice of scanning emails was happening, and when they found out they didn't like it." By raising awarness, Weitz continued, Microsoft hoped to make people "hit that cognitive speed bump" and at least momentarily question their use of Google's services. Ultimately, however, Weitz called Google's services "a habit... it's like smoking. It's hard to get folks to stop doing it."
Feb 13, 2013
Microsoft just came out with the second phase of its "Scroogled" campaign, a series of fearmongering attack ads aimed at Google that are very similar to the political attack ads that flood the airwaves during election season.Read Article >
Dramatic voiceover. Vague implications of danger. Damning clips of the opponent saying something stupid (thanks, Eric Schmidt). "Email between a husband and wife or two best friends should be completely personal," a smooth-voiced announcer says in one spot. "But Google crosses the line and goes through every single Gmail."
Feb 7, 2013
So you thought that Microsoft was done lambasting Google with its "Scroogled" ad campaign? Surprise, the company is back with a new "seven figure" offensive, railing against Google’s practice of serving ads based on the body text of your Gmail messages. Under the tagline "Think Google respects your privacy? Think again," Microsoft explains how its own Outlook.com "prioritizes privacy," while Google "goes through your personal email" to sell ads.Read Article >
This isn't the first time Microsoft has called out Gmail. Last year, it took out a full-page ad in national newspapers like The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal levying the same criticisms around privacy. And while its Gmail Man spoof ad was reportedly meant for internal eyes only, Microsoft ended up making it public, putting it on its official YouTube and Facebook pages earlier in the year.
Dec 15, 2012Read Article >
There's a good reason that Microsoft's recent anti-Google efforts — including an admonition not to get "scroogled" by Google Shopping — feel like political attack ads: the team behind them is led by former pollster and longtime campaign advisor Mark Penn. Penn, who worked for both Bill and Hillary Clinton's presidential campaigns, joined Microsoft in mid-2012 as a senior vice president for "strategic and special projects." The New York Times has profiled Penn, who came to Microsoft as the company was starting one of its most aggressive publicity pushes in recent years. "If any of our competitors say things about us that we don’t think are true, we’re not going to sit on the sidelines," says Microsoft spokesman Frank Shaw. "We’re going to pop them."
Nov 28, 2012
Microsoft is launching its latest anti-Google campaign this week. A new Scroogled site has emerged that directly attacks Google's "unfair pay-to-rank shopping practices" says Microsoft. "Simply put, all of their shopping results are now paid ads," reads a statement on the site. The move follows a change by Google to move to a model where all merchants pay either per click or per transaction to be included in Google Shopping.Read Article >
"We say that when you limit choices and rank them by payment, consumers get Scroogled," says Microsoft. The Scroogled site offers up a blatant way to use Bing for holiday shopping results, the latest in a string of anti-Google attacks from Microsoft. The software maker launched "Bing it on" recently with a TV campaign to challenge Google's search results, but the company has also previously attacked Google's privacy changes with newspaper ads and Gmail man video.
Feb 21, 2012
Feb 2, 2012Read Article >