Microsoft Dodges Another Bullet

ByABC News
September 7, 2001, 1:12 PM

Sept. 10 -- This week's Cybershake looks at the latest twist in the government's antitrust case against Microsoft, a new chip from Motorola, and a Web site that may find bargain services.

Microsoft Dodges Another Bullet For Now

The Justice Department says it wants to drop the idea of splitting up Microsoft in its ongoing antitrust suit against the software company. "I think Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer have got to be dancing a jig and giving each other the high five over the fact that the government is not going to come and try to breakup the company," says Mary Fran Johnson, editor of Computer World magazine.

But what does it mean for consumers? "In the short term, it really doesn't mean anything bad or good for consumers," says Johnson. "The same products will be on the shelves now as will be six months from now and even a year."

After that, however, things might change. "What you could see in the longer term is actually a lessening of the choices in the marketplace when you go into a computer store and you want to buy software," says Johnson.

And it isn't all good news for Microsoft. The Justice Department suggests a lesser penalty that could affect the new Windows XP operating system. "It's likely that the XP product now will become the focal point of this battle before the district court," says Chicago attorney Hillard Sterling.

Larry Jacobs, ABCNEWS

Cheaper, Faster Chip From Motorola

Motorola has taken hits in its cell phone and semiconductor operations. But now a new computer chip may be the answer to Motorola's financial problems.

Jim Prendergast, a vice president with the Illinois-based company, says the chip is 35 times faster than current chips and will help develop various devices that will be cheaper, faster and better. "The decision with this technology is to broadly license the technology and move this out as fast and as far as possible into the marketplace," says Prendergast.

And Prendergast says the chip technology may help bring about a home that is wired for fast Internet access. "What we could do with this technology is integrate many of the requirements for bringing fiber optics to the home and give very high speed data communications, video on demand, etc. to the home," he says.