Windows Weekly 847, Transcript

Please be advised this transcript is AI-generated and may not be word for word. Time codes refer to the approximate times in the ad-supported version of the show.

Leo Laporte (00:00:00):
It's time for Windows Weekly. Paul Thurrott's here. Richard Campbell's traveling, although he may make a surprise visit at the airport. There is, as you might imagine if you've been following the news a bit, to talk about Panos. Panay abruptly leaves Microsoft. Where's he headed next? And was he pushed or did he jump? Also, we'll talk about the leaked memo and the hundreds of pages of revelations about the Xbox roadmap. Paul's got all the details for that. And [00:00:30] then a preview of tomorrow's, what we were calling it, a surface event. Paul says it's not about surface. All that. Coming up next on Windows Weekly.

Windows Weekly with Paul Thurrott. Episode 847 Recorded Wednesday, September 20th, 2023 [00:01:00] T. This episode of Windows Weekly is brought to you by eva. It's a first Eva's new pro series, the H D L three 10 for large rooms, and the H D L four 10 for a extra large rooms gives you uncompromised audio in systems that are incredibly simple to set up, manage and deploy at scale. Learn more at and by Miro. Miro is your team's online workspace [00:01:30] to connect, collaborate and create together. Tap into a way to map processes, systems, and plans with the whole team. Get your first three boards for free to start creating your best work yet at It's time for Windows Weekly. Paul Throt is here. Richard Campbell is on route to where? New Zealand.

Paul Thurrott (00:01:52):
Paul is. He

Leo Laporte (00:01:55):
Zealand, New Zealand? We

Paul Thurrott (00:01:56):
Don't know. Or Australia? I think he's going to I don't really know this. [00:02:00] We don't know. We don't know. It's one or both. He's in the sky's at least. Yeah, he's in the sky

Leo Laporte (00:02:04):
And he's kicking himself because today is probably the biggest news day of the year, but

Paul Thurrott (00:02:11):
Anticipated it. The biggest day of the century. Unanticipated, I'm trying to remember this much news. At one time I

Leo Laporte (00:02:20):
Thought just with the memo leak that we would have a five hour show and then

Paul Thurrott (00:02:24):
We're going to be going back on this one because I'm only begun [00:02:30] to analyze that leak. There's an incredible bananas of content in there. We'll discuss some of it. Yikes. Sure. Yikes. But

Leo Laporte (00:02:40):
Before we get to that, I think we have to talk about Panos Pane leaving Microsoft and going to Amazon.

Paul Thurrott (00:02:51):
What? Yeah, just as kind of background on this, Amazon held their devices event today. You [00:03:00] might've watched it. I couldn't. Couldn't invited you watched it. It didn't stream. Have to. It was a Right, right. So all the expected kind of fire tv, Alexa type devices and everything, big push for Generat AI and Alexa, which is Microsoft missed this opportunity. Cortana is gone. Google, curiously is talking about this in other places, but not with assistant. As soon [00:03:30] as I saw this kind of thing, I thought, this is where this should be. It should be in these voice assistants, right? Yeah. So we'll look at that in a little more detail. Not later in this show, but I'm going to look at that probably over the weekend, frankly. But I'm going to go back and kind of re-look at that part of it. I think that's really interesting.

But anyway, Amazon devices and services has been led by a long time by a guy named Dave Limp, and he announced early this year his attention to retire before the end of the year. And so when this announcement [00:04:00] came, which Microsoft announced and provided me some information on separately, which I thought was kind of nice. And then Panos, I think might've tweeted something about it. Of course, the first question was about the timing and why. Well, my question is fired or quit. Okay, we're going to get to this. So timing is one. Yeah. And then there's that report that came out of Bloomberg. I believe that he was going to be going to Amazon, of course, and taking over the devices business was the way Bloomberg [00:04:30] described it. So I don't know if he's literally succeeding David Limp or if he's going to do part of that job, right? I don't know. So there's somebody already there. Okay. Sorry, that's what you're saying. This is the report and it's Dina Blas. So Dina Bass rather. So I very reliable report.

We will see. So yeah, why now? What's going on here? The last time we saw Panay [00:05:00] was back at Build 2023 in May, which I think everyone, whatever one thinks of him, because this guy was of course, divisive. Some people thought he was the greatest presenter in the world and a great advocate for Microsoft hardware and software. Others thought he was awkward and weird, and you can make your own decision on that one. But his session or his part, his bit of the build 2023 keynote was one of the weirdest [00:05:30] things I've ever seen in a Microsoft event ever. He was off kilter. It wasn't just awkward and weird in his normal fashion. It was something was wrong. And eventually, I can't say discovered based on the information provided by a source. I wrote about it, and we would've talked about in the podcast this notion that at the very last minute, all of his news items were taken away from him by Satya Nadella who wanted to have all the announcements.

This was their big AI coming out party [00:06:00] for developers and also for strategy. And my understanding, my belief is that he was supposed to be the one announcing the information about Windows copilot and everything that was happening on the client. And when you stripped that part of his talk out, you are left with nothing. And this guy, again, everyone has their opinions, but the one thing I think is an objective truth is that he was not very good with off the cuff type situations. He needed [00:06:30] to be heavily prepared. And even then, he was a little kind of weird and awkward. But one of the things I am aware of is that this is pre pandemic because of the timing, but the last 2, 3, 4, maybe events that we went to in person where he was speaking, he actually brought in fans to sit in front of the journalists because he didn't like the feedback he was getting from journalists.

We weren't applauding and cheering and whatever. Interesting. And he needed that kind of thing. And so we were all sitting in the back of the room, what's going [00:07:00] on here? And so it was already getting weird. So that Bill 2023 appearance was a disaster no matter how you slice it. And of course, the question you have to ask yourself is, did that have anything to do with this? Right? Was that the beginning of, wait, what's going on here? Or whatever. And right now, my sources are indicating no. So that those things had nothing to do with each other. I don't [00:07:30] know. So apparently he's landing in Amazon devices, apparently he's maybe leading the devices. Part of that I have now heard from multiple sources inside Microsoft executives, employees, former employees about him. As happens, the smack talk begins when there's no fighting back to be had no pushback. And the consensus on him is kind of what I always thought. A [00:08:00] lot of people didn't think he was qualified. A lot of people were not impressed with his so pumped though accomplishments.

He was so pumped. Yeah, I don't want to get into this too much. I mean, the weird thing for me was I had a personal relationship, frankly, with the previous three people who ran Windows and to varying degrees. Terry Myerson would call me sometimes almost like I was a therapist, [00:08:30] Steven Sinofsky, who was hot and cold depending on the day. And what he liked or didn't like about what I wrote most recently was either my best friend in the world and my worst enemy. And he also, he wouldn't call me, but he would send me these incredible 2000 word emails in the middle of the night, either ranting or exalting about something. And Panay was nothing. Panay was, you never heard from an outsider. Yeah. Well, I say the words.

Leo Laporte (00:08:55):
He stole your laptop once, right?

Paul Thurrott (00:08:57):
Yeah. No, he knew what it was. So I have a few pnet stories, [00:09:00] but you got to remember, and this is the thing I never quite understood. So this guy came to Microsoft to design mice and keyboards. That's what he was doing. And so how he went from that to creating a computer and then convincing Steven Sinofsky that this thing made sense, and then Steven Sinofsky going to Balmer and the board and being rejected multiple times before they all finally agreed it was the right idea and it wasn't. But whatever is one of those crazy stories that, I mean, I feel like [00:09:30] there's a crucial detail on missing some insights. He has this capability or skill that I'm not aware of that, but for him, okay, so we run Surface, it's okay, it's a hardware line. It's kind of a small thing. Obviously very controversial when they first came out with it, but when he took over Windows, I bringing that amount, that type of, or his style, how do I say this?

I'm trying to be diplomatic here. It was kind of form over [00:10:00] function, frankly. Yeah. I often joke with Sat and Adela, which is really unfair because he's an engineer and a very smart person. But I would joke about him that if you took one of his speeches and put it into Word and had word condense it down to a synopsis, it would come up with nothing because it was nothing said. And I really feel like that was what Panay was all about. He never really said anything of substance and never really did anything of substance. And I think you could be very critical objectively of [00:10:30] all the boats that surfaced, missed all the technologies, they let slip every single time came up with the last generation processor as a new one was coming out. Do you think those

Leo Laporte (00:10:38):
Were his decisions?

Paul Thurrott (00:10:40):
He led the group? I mean, I'm sure there were factors that contributed to this pricing cost structures that he couldn't do anything about. I'm sure

Leo Laporte (00:10:54):
A big battleship that it's hard. I don't know if one man can control it. I mean, all I know about [00:11:00] him was his presentation, so

Paul Thurrott (00:11:02):
I have no idea. What's your take on his presentation style?

Leo Laporte (00:11:05):
They were dopey. They were terrible. We always made fun of him. Weird.

Paul Thurrott (00:11:08):

Leo Laporte (00:11:09):
I think it was just he was trying to be Steve Jobs and he wasn't.

Paul Thurrott (00:11:13):
We're so far past the point. Anyone should be trying that. I understand that. I think you're, by the

Leo Laporte (00:11:18):
Way, I would judge his performance on that mean. Okay. Because that's not his real job. As wasn't hired as a presenter, he was hired to run hardware

Paul Thurrott (00:11:25):
Except that he was hardware, right? Well, not originally, but that became [00:11:30] his role. In other words, this was a thing I had talked to Terry Myerson about, right? When you lead a group at Microsoft and you're going, your group is going to present some information that person wants to do that. They don't want to give it away to underlings because God forbid, that goes over really well. And then that underling is viewed as being more important than maybe they get promoted over you and that kind of thing. And so this is a weird political thing that absolutely is a thing. But I think the thing people need to [00:12:00] understand about Microsoft and public presentations is that they have a business inside of Microsoft that teaches executives and other people how to speak publicly. And it is a grueling, ongoing process, and there is no end to it unless you're really good at it.

And I have to think that this was like someone forcing him to do homework on weekends every time, because he's never got good at it. Terry Myerson started off very poorly, I would say, from a public presentation perspective, but then he got better over time. And that's [00:12:30] usually what happens to people when they accept more experience. Look, it's hard. I was always terrible at public presentations, but my key skill, if I have to 0.1 out, is that I was good at the the cuff stuff. So Q and a, that kind of thing. If something went wrong, you could just keep talking. And he was just the exact opposite of that. And I just found that weird. Most people who, well, most people are on stage that much want to be there [00:13:00] and do develop skills. And I always found his whole thing to be very strange.

But personally, I would just say the other thing that those people that ran Windows had in common was that they understood where I was coming from. And what I mean by that is that critical feedback is constructive, and it comes from a place literally of love, meaning I love the product, I love the people that use it. I want this thing to be good. And I always [00:13:30] kind of compared it to, my kid comes home with a bad report card and I still love the kid, but I'm still going to yell at him, and we're still going to punish that kid. And that is one way to show love in a way, because we want that kid in this case, to do the best that they can do. And they weren't doing it. And I very clearly, in fact, I know explicitly that was not the case with Panos Spinney.

He did not understand that. And Steven Sinofsky had this problem actually at times. Eddie criticism was just, it was a us versus [00:14:00] you mentality and whatever. My first interaction with Pano Spinney was just as awkward and weird as my first one with Steven Sinofsky. When I first met Steven Sinofsky, it was after he had emailed me for the very first time because I had leaked something about some future version of Office and asked me to take it down, which I did for a time. And when I met him at the next office event he was speaking, I walked up to him and he was talking to a couple of guys. It was [00:14:30] a lull in the conversation. I said, Steve, I'm sorry to interrupt. I just wanted to introduce myself. I'm Paul. And he literally just looked at me and he looked me up and down, and then he turned back and just kept talking.

And it didn't acknowledge me in any way, shape or form, but I was like, okay, here we go. The first time I met Pano Spinone, he was coming to Boston, and I got someone from PR reached out and said, Hey, could you meet with him at the Boston store? I said, sure. They had the Microsoft store then. And so I went in and I thought we were going to sit out there. They have tables [00:15:00] and things. And he's like, no, no, we're going out back. And we went into this kind of back dark room with no windows. It was way in the back of the store, and someone closed the door, and it was just me and him, and he said, and this was right either after Surface two had launched or it was just about to launch, and I had received a mother load of leaks about this product.

I fully leaked it to the world, whatever, everything. The only thing I got wrong was I thought it was white. It was just an off color photo. It was gray. The machine was not black anymore. But I had the whole [00:15:30] everything, all the specs, all the pictures, all the whatever. And he demanded to know who had given me this information. I said, I don't know if you press works, you're never going to give it to him. Yeah. I'm like, that's not how that works. I protect my sources. He was insane. He was positive I was going to give him this information. And I just thought, man, this is a really weird way to get on with this guy. So I eventually just sort of said, so seriously this not That was the point of the meeting was for him. Yeah, that's all he wanted. That's what he wanted me to route [00:16:00] on, whoever it was.

What an ass. And I was just like, man, this is sorry. And no, the answer was no. So I don't know. I mean, I guess identify one quote was pretty good from somebody. Do you think he didn't like you from that point on? Yeah. Yeah. I think he saw me as adversarial. I think he was, the reason I didn't get a bunch of the devices for review were petty little things like relationship with Apple as well. I mean, that's our job. Our job is not to be a cheerleader [00:16:30] for a company. I'm not patting myself on the back, but when it comes to Windows P reviews, I think I'm pretty good. You're pretty well known and you're significant in the field again. But after Surface Pro three, well, I don't know, maybe it was after Surface Pro, the whole Surface Gate thing, which I coined that term.

I am sure he did not like that. I've been very critical of the leadership at Surface, meaning him frankly, and their decisions and ignoring U S B C for so many years, no wonder, [00:17:00] no, thank you, but that's not yes, yes and no. Right? In other words, where am I coming from? Here's an idea, have a discussion with me. So just to give you an idea of the difference between meetings you might have in private with someone like that. One year I was going to CSS and Microsoft did not have no longer had presence there. And this is the year before Microsoft announced the year probably that Microsoft announced Windows S Mode or Windows 10 s or whatever. So I got to reach out to someone said, Hey, Terry wants to meet you at whatever, wherever it is. [00:17:30] And I went into this. It was just me and him in a big room.

We were talking, and he was telling me that this thing that was called Windows 10 Cloud was coming. And I told him this was a bad name, and he said, yep, no, we are going to change the name. Everyone agrees it's terrible. But then he told me about how they were going to charge for it, but that if anybody, no, they were going to charge for it, but only for after a certain period of time, two or three months or something. And I was like, oh. I said, that's not a good idea. And he is like, why? And I said, well, I just checked into my terrible hotel last [00:18:00] night, coming here in Vegas. I got in the middle of the night, stood in line for 40 minutes or so many people in to check in. And then I get up there and I look at my bill, and it's literally twice what they said it was going to be because I booked it through Expedia, like a jerk.

And I said, how come this bill is so expensive? It was all these extra fees. And it's like that gotcha. You moment is what I call it. Yeah, resort fees. And I said, that's what you do when the customers, I said, you're giving them this crappy version of Windows, and then they want to switch to the real thing, and it's a got you moment. They're going to pay another 50 bucks. And I will never forget this moment. I've told the [00:18:30] story in writing at least, but we were in a conference room. So he leaned back in his chair. So he was almost parallel to the ground, and he was staring up at the ceiling, and I won't say it, but he was like F-word. But he drew it at over 10 seconds. And I'm like, Terry, come on. I can't be the first person that came up with this idea.

This is whatever. But anyway, they changed it, and the way they changed it was they extended the time and then they secretly said, we're never going to charge anybody. We're not going to charge for this. It would be that got you moment, right? You could do that. Or you could do what Panos did, which was [00:19:00] to solely cut me out of the thing. He would do petty things, like bunch of devices would come out and he would only let me review the really cheap little thing instead of the nice one or whatever. And it's like, dude, this is not my audience. My audience isn't buying the toy. They're getting the enterprise device. So there was that. And then there are people who obviously is my opinion biased in some way. Yeah, probably, right? But I've been doing this for a long time. [00:19:30] I've dealt with a lot of these people. I've never seen anything quite like him. And one guy, this

Leo Laporte (00:19:35):
Is a pet peeve of mine, which is it's happening across the tech industry because of this is a little inside baseball folks, I apologize, but you should know because you should consider this when you look at reviews because of the rise of the influencer, and particularly in YouTube, but TikTok and everywhere else, these companies have realized, oh, these guys have [00:20:00] millions of views. Whether they have the influence, I don't know, but they have millions of views and they're much more amenable because they're not journalists. They're much more amenable to much more stroking and let's

Paul Thurrott (00:20:14):
Take a

Leo Laporte (00:20:15):
Picture and all that stuff. And so as a result, they don't want to deal with you.

Paul Thurrott (00:20:20):
They don't want, we can just be praised all the time. Well, let's just do that. I don't think that's healthy, by the way. And I mean that on bad, many, many levels.

Leo Laporte (00:20:29):
Now they're getting [00:20:30] their information from people who have effectively been suborned.

Paul Thurrott (00:20:34):
I would say this is bad for the company. It's bad for the product, and it's bad for that person who made that decision, including the leader of that business, because everyone knows this. It's simple. Don't just listen to yes men. You have to have people pushing back saying, hold on a second. This isn't right. Especially when it's coming, like I said, from a place, the right place, I call it place of love, but it's a place of constructive criticism. I care about this stuff. [00:21:00] I want it to be as good as people. It's not apparent that Microsoft listens to users either. I hate to say it, but yeah. Well, listen, this is my lifelong struggle. So anyway, so here we are. I would just, I don't know. I don't know. Terry Myerson, who I liked quite a bit after a while goes by, you learn some things about 'em that weren't great, and I have a little more nuanced view on this.

I'm hoping and expecting I [00:21:30] will learn more about this person and what happened over time, and we'll see. Right? Don't who's running it now. Do you know the person who's running it now? Yeah. So this is actually kind of interesting. So Microsoft sent me a little insight, well, I think they going to publish this at some point, but they sent me a note and part of it was this internal letter that they had written explaining what was happening such as they do Microsoft is essentially, you got to remember, so Panos Penne was the [00:22:00] chief product officer, by the way. There's another little bit of, I'll call it Douchie that occurs when you start to get into a situation where you can invent your own title. So he got into that stratosphere, but remember this was a guy who worked in the hardware group at Microsoft, became the leader of the Surface team, and then took on Windows as well. So as Chief Product Officer, he actually had two of the three major businesses that are interesting, more personal computing.

[00:22:30] Terry Morrison was actually in charge of more personal computing. And so when he left, it was kind of a weird void. It was kind of Rajesh Shah, but not really. And there were people doing little bits of it, and there were teams working on user experience and whatever else. This time, they very explicitly divided up this guy's responsibilities. So there were actually three people. A, all of whom report to Raje [00:23:00] is still there, as did Panay actually. But the Windows part of it has. So we have somewhat, I think it's two people are leading a team that includes Surface. It's kind of interesting. So all of the people we associated with Surface, Stevie Bati, the guy we love so much, and Rolf and whoever else is part of this new team that includes some other stuff, which is kind of interesting. They're building silicon systems and devices that span Windows client and cloud for an AI world.

[00:23:30] Hint, hint about that thing next week, tomorrow rather. That's interesting. But the Windows Bit has gone to Yusuf Medi. This is a guy, he's been at Microsoft since the, I don't know exactly mid nineties, I would imagine early nineties. I met him for the first time in 1998 when I went to the Windows N NT 5.0 technical workshop, the product that became Windows 2000. He was with Windows for a long time. He left over time. He went to, it was different names over time, but what was Windows [00:24:00] Live, remember? And then Xbox, he was there for quite a bit. He was at Bing most recently. In fact, he was the executive who gave the presentation back in February about binging Chat. So now he's come back into the fold. That's very interesting to me. And actually, I'm sorry. He is the leader of Windows and Service, which is this kind subgroup under this other stuff.

So I don't know. When you see that one executive leaves, and it requires [00:24:30] three different teams with three different executives, there's two different ways to see that. One was this guy was so amazing that his job cannot be done by one other person, or we realize putting that much power and that much product or whatever under one person maybe was not the best idea. And that what these things need is different leadership, and particularly in this age, we're going into this AI thing, which we'll talk a lot about later, that maybe he wasn't the right guy for this part of,

Leo Laporte (00:24:59):

Paul Thurrott (00:25:00):
[00:25:00] The thing. So I don't know,

Leo Laporte (00:25:03):
From the outside, it looked like he got a job offer at Amazon and decided to leave Microsoft and go to Amazon. You don't, well,

Paul Thurrott (00:25:12):
He was rumored to have been trying to go to Apple several years ago, right? That's rather embarrassing. A lot of their promoting of Surface over the years has been a direct comparison with Man Book Pros and iPads and so forth, and someone as image conscious as this guy was, [00:25:30] which is weird for all of the rings and chains he wore and whatever, and the kind of tortured style of the man, but image conscious, whatever. Clearly I am not, so maybe I should just shut the hell up about that. But Amazon though. Amazon, so I don't know what to say to this, right? Surface as a product has obviously evolved from a strategy perspective. Many times over the years, people forget [00:26:00] this, but the initial generation of products, which was Surface RT and the initial surface, the expectation inside of Microsoft is that the RT device, the thing that was most like the iPad, would outsell the pro by an order of magnitude. This was the future. And that when this took off, this was the generation or the direction that Windows was going to go in. It was going to turn into more of this device thing. That is not what happened. I think everybody understands. There was a write down, write off, whatever it was, of almost a billion dollars. They [00:26:30] had to dump all that inventory, the rt. That was

Leo Laporte (00:26:33):
When Satya came in and killed the successor, right? This whole idea of the

Paul Thurrott (00:26:39):
Low, yeah. So the timing on this

Leo Laporte (00:26:41):

Paul Thurrott (00:26:42):
Yeah, look, there was a huge overreaction to Apple and Multitouch that occurred under Steven Sinofsky, and he tried to spread it like a cancer throat at Microsoft, and that overreaction included a lot of things, but some of them were Windows eight, which sort of ignored the [00:27:00] 100% of the installed base, which were desktop and laptop computers and said the world's going to be this iPad thing. There was also Surface, and then there were all the Touch First app initiatives around U W P as a platform, but also what was called Metro Modern or whatever back in the day. But also Microsoft Office, which people also forget. They were going to drop the desktop versions of office and move to the mobile versions, and they had that dream that the apps were going to work on whatever device and [00:27:30] one windows and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, whatever.

It took those guys about six months to realize this is never, it's not happening now and it's not happening ever. And they completely scaled back from that. But that was why we had gotten the one successful office app on uwp, which was OneNote for Windows 10. They also explicitly killed Desktop OneNote and said, this is where all the future's happening. We're putting all the new features here. And then everything went south, and they had to go back on that too. And now that's the lame duck sitting in the store getting no updates. [00:28:00] So everything changed. There was a whole mess that happened in 2012. That was the release of Windows eight and Surface. The iPad happened in 2010, the iPad in 2007. So there's your predecessors for this Predicator or whatever, and Windows 10 was the correction, right? Windows. Well, windows eight one X a bunch releases eight response.

Yeah. Yeah. But they fixed it. So eight one, they brought back the start button 8 1 1, they brought back the start menu, windows 10, they brought back the desktop [00:28:30] focus. There was a big reversal. Yeah, I mean, it's hard turning the battleship. So what was his contribution in all this? Was he there? When did he start running that? Yeah, so think about, this is awful. I don't mean this to be so critical, but seriously, think about this. Jim Agen, right? This wonderful man, this technical engineer did good and bad, right? Horrible during the Microsoft antitrust trial on the stand, but [00:29:00] LED windows during a very critical era. He led Windows at a time when they had to decide whether web technology or native. I think he made that wrong choice by the way. He went native, dropped all the web stuff, but Vista happened on his watch Windows xp, windows 2000.

He left because of Vista, right? So Vista Longhorn debacle was the end of him. Steven Sinofsky Windows seven. Everyone kind of holds him up for this incredible accomplishment. I would argue that was a service pack for Vista, but fine, but also Windows eight big ideas. I [00:29:30] disagree with all of them, but at least ideas. The guy was shooting for the stars. There's no doubt about it. Things changed a lot. The windows is very diminished compared to the smartphones and tablets, the world. So by the time you get to Terry Morrison, he has to kind of clean up this mess and make sure that Windows to developers is as important as any other platform. And the idea there is we're going to get a billion devices, and that's about as big as Android and iOS at the time. And no one will ignore this. And there were lots of [00:30:00] initiatives around all those bridges we used to talk about and all this stuff, and none of it ever worked.

And the problem was that the U W P thing was always broken to begin with. It was a good idea in theory, but a poorly implemented Satchin Nadella came in 20 14, 20 15, somewhere in there, killed Windows phone immediately. Didn't communicate it to the world, by the way. So we had to deal with that for a little while. But that was the end of the one window stream. Once you get rid of Windows phone, having an app platform, a Windows that can sort of work [00:30:30] with different devices, doesn't even matter anymore. HoloLens was never going to sell it Volume. The Xbox didn't really have a big need for apps. And frankly, the size and shape of that screen, the Windows apps would've been fine. So here we are. I dunno, but so Pano spin, what was his accomplishment? He put lipstick on a pig. That's what he did. He put the Windows 10 x ui, which was developed before him and had nothing to do with him on Windows as Windows 11, and that's all that was worse.

[00:31:00] That team also stripped out a bunch of features in the name of Simplicity, which I got to tell you, I do respect. The problem is you have to do it right, because by nature, if you are looking at a UI that's really busy and has lots of stuff going on, and you strip it down to a really simple UI where only a few things going on, you're losing functionality. And that's what they did. They lost a lot of functionality without really paying attention to what was important to users. Because we're two years in now. So the [00:31:30] first year was just a bunch of complaining about all the stuff. I'm right clicking, I don't see this or the inconsistencies. I right click on the desktop and it's the Windows 10 menu. But when I right click on the task bar somewhere else, it's a Windows 11 menu.

And it was rushed to market. I'm not saying that was his fault, actually. I don't know whose fault that was, but it was incomplete, functional regressions all over the place. And here we are, it's two years later, we're about to release a new version of Windows 11, third version, and we're kind of where we [00:32:00] should have been three years ago, frankly. Right? This is what Windows 11 should have been from the beginning. What we're about to get. So is that, I don't know. Is that his fault? Is it an accomplishment? I don't know what to call that, but that was the entire state of his run

Leo Laporte (00:32:16):
At Windows. So there's one scenario which is he doesn't have to move. He can work for Amazon. It's maybe a better job. Maybe they offered him a lot of money, so he quit and he goes there. The other scenario is, I mean, let's face it, weird and horrific performance [00:32:30] at the, was it Ignite the last event? Build, build rather? Yeah. I mean, it wasn't so bad that I would say, we better get rid of this guy. It felt

Paul Thurrott (00:32:39):
Like, I thought it was so bad to me. I was like, I dunno how we move forward. It

Leo Laporte (00:32:43):
Was, we felt like there was a rug pull, right? He had been told he was going to do a normal presentation, and then somebody said, no, Satya wants to do it tomorrow.

Paul Thurrott (00:32:53):
Listen, when things go wrong is when you learn what people are all about,

Leo Laporte (00:32:57):

Paul Thurrott (00:32:58):
Yeah. No, it really is. No, I mean that [00:33:00] he should

Leo Laporte (00:33:00):
Have said, there's nothing for me to do. I don't want this presentation now. Because you took away all the

Paul Thurrott (00:33:05):
Meaning. Well, his names I know he could have done. There's all kinds of ways we could have handled it. I'm sure Nixon wish he did something different than I'm I I'm

Leo Laporte (00:33:13):
Trying to get you, I know you don't want to commit, and so I know this is pure speculation, who knows? But if you were going to bet, just like, I know it's 50 50, but did he quit? Was he fired?

Paul Thurrott (00:33:30):
[00:33:30] I don't know. And if I had to guess, I think it was a combination of, so he

Leo Laporte (00:33:36):
Saw the right.

Paul Thurrott (00:33:37):

Leo Laporte (00:33:37):
Sometimes does happen. I've had this happen to me where you can see the writings on the wall's not going so well, and you go,

Paul Thurrott (00:33:43):
Let's wall

Leo Laporte (00:33:44):
By mutual agreement. See you.

Paul Thurrott (00:33:46):
Yeah. This is a guy who clearly always wanted more power, right? Oh, he God, it

Leo Laporte (00:33:51):
Make mice. Yeah.

Paul Thurrott (00:33:53):
I think he used the Apple thing as leverage, because going to Apple, think about what would Panos pane have done at Apple? They [00:34:00] would not have put him in charge of any part of the hardware. He would've been there maybe, but they already have amazing people at Apple, right? So he would've been in a more subservient role, but I bet he would've accepted if he had to. I think he, I don't know really. I don't really know what he wanted, but I wouldn't be surprised if he wanted that. But I also think he, and this is based on, this is not just me guessing, but he used this as leverage and it was part of the, okay, you can have windows too. I think that was part, he just wanted more and more power. This is the problem with every Synapsia had this problem, [00:34:30] right? You always want more. And

This is my guess, and this kind of makes sense from a educated guess perspective, Microsoft is undergoing a transformation right now that they announced internally last November and are now implementing publicly over time. We learned some of it in February. We learned some of it, I want to say it was March-ish when they talked about Microsoft 365 copilot. We learned a bunch of it in May at Build, and that was when Stevie Batis talked about [00:35:00] alongside inside outside generations of AI that would occur with apps, and we're going to learn a bunch of it tomorrow, which we're going to talk about soon or later today anyway. And that as part of the shift, the old structure that was Microsoft, that was his part of Microsoft, I think was going away. And I think he was losing power. When I use, where's this quote? Microsoft is creating a team and has a desire [00:35:30] to build silicon systems and devices that span Windows client and cloud for an AI world.

That's not just what he was doing. That's a bigger thing. And he was not the guy who was going to run that. And since that was the case, that is a combination of them maybe wanting to diminish him and him saying, no, I don't want less power. I want more. This would be seen as a demotion. And Oh, look, David Limp is retiring, and I don't know who reached out to who. It's possible if this had happened a year [00:36:00] ago, he would've said, Amazon, what? Are you kidding me? But because the way it happened, because of the timing and what's happening this year at Microsoft, I think that's what opened the door. So I don't know where the push was.

Leo Laporte (00:36:10):
Makes sense. That makes sense. I think

Paul Thurrott (00:36:11):

Leo Laporte (00:36:12):
That's probably what happened, knowing how corporations work and so forth.

Paul Thurrott (00:36:16):

Leo Laporte (00:36:17):
My has Microsoft sent out a note? I mean is the traditional letter from Satya Nadela saying, thank

Paul Thurrott (00:36:26):
You. Thank you. There was a letter internally, and then I also reay something.

Leo Laporte (00:36:30):
[00:36:30] Oh, okay. They've told, yeah, I saw the internal letter, but I meant publicly.

Paul Thurrott (00:36:35):
Yeah, no, yeah, no, they've

Leo Laporte (00:36:38):
Acknowledged it. And what did they say? We thank him for his many contributions over the years.

Paul Thurrott (00:36:43):
Yeah. They're not going to say we fired him. No.

Leo Laporte (00:36:47):
Yeah, but well, yeah, sometimes there's hints.

Paul Thurrott (00:36:53):
Yeah. Well, my hints come from people internally, right? Yeah. Yeah. That's a better, in fact, as we were talking, I just got an email [00:37:00] from somebody who

Leo Laporte (00:37:00):

Paul Thurrott (00:37:01):
The question here is pushed or jumped. Pushed or jumped.

Leo Laporte (00:37:04):
That's the

Paul Thurrott (00:37:05):
Question. And so what he's telling me, let me read this a moment

Leo Laporte (00:37:10):
Before I ahead. Take your time. You know what? While you do that, this would be a good time for me to do an ad. There you go. You can read your email and we'll answer the musical question pushed or jumped. It's a fascinating story, and we're just beginning because there was a huge memo accidentally leaked during discovery in another court case [00:37:30] and thousands of pages of information about Microsoft's plans with Xbox and more. We'll get to that, and there's a big AI event tomorrow. Paul thinks this is going to be major. We'll get to that. I'm sorry. Richard isn't here either. He planned this carefully to avoid a little extra work. I think more likely he's sitting on the plane going, damnit, damnit Jim. He

Paul Thurrott (00:37:55):
Doesn't strike me as

Leo Laporte (00:37:56):
A slacker. No, he's no slacker. I'm sure. Well, next week [00:38:00] he'll be back next week, and I'm sure he'll have lots to say about this. Our show today brought to you by Eva. Love these guys. Eva meeting room audio technology. It has a history of wowing It pros, and it frankly wowed me. Eva solves a big problem for your huddle room, your meeting room, big or small. It solves the problem of some people being here. We still have meetings where we just had our big [00:38:30] all hands meeting yesterday. Some people are in the room, big room. It's in the studio. Some people are on the zoom far away. And the problem is those poor people who aren't in the room can hardly hear. And Eva solves this, it's amazing technology. Ask Duque University. They have literally 100 EVA devices installed. One of their senior technologists recently said, I can quote this.

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Lecture hall too, right? With just two discreet wall-mounted devices, you can even use them and set 'em up. So you've got the two devices, and if you have a divider, you can have it separate. You control it all from the rave console. The HDL four 10 also features a unified coverage map. So that processes might pick up from the two devices simultaneously to create a giant single mic array, but it's not. It's that microphone mist. It's thousands [00:41:30] of mics. It's little brother, the hhl three 10 cover spaces from 30 feet to 30 feet, 30 feet by 30 feet. That's still pretty big. And that just takes one mic in speaker bar, and you can install it yourself in about 30 minutes. With continuous auto calibration, EVA audio automatically continuously adapts the changes in a RIMS acoustic profile. Pull that divider, it figures it out, it says, fine. We're going to split those. It does it automatically. And with nerva console, [00:42:00] their cloud-based device management platform, it takes the pain out of things like firmware updates, checking device status, changing settings. One IT professional can do it without leaving her desk. It's awesome. It solves a huge problem. You need this thing. Learn more at N U R E V wt. Alright, I've stalled long enough. I've given [00:42:30] Paul time to read his secret email from someone who shall remain unnamed.

Paul Thurrott (00:42:37):
Yeah, so this person is saying that with the layoffs that occurred back in March, Panos team was gutted and he pushed back and pissed off some higher ups, and the writing was on the wall. Now, I don't know anything about this other than I will tell you, I've heard from multiple people in windows and outside of Windows, what was the word that this came [00:43:00] up more than once about just how, this is how they said it, but they felt kind of beleaguered. They were, nothing they did was important and nobody appreciates what they do happened in

Leo Laporte (00:43:11):
Big companies. I can understand that.

Paul Thurrott (00:43:13):
Well, especially when you're in the part of the company that used to run the company, and now you're just like a backwater. It's fair. I point this out a lot. I mean, the best talent at Microsoft left Windows a million years ago. They're all working on, well, ai, right? I mean, so this has been a problem for Windows [00:43:30] for a long time, right? It's just not the focus anymore. You remember it was Windows only. Windows first and Windows. Do we make windows? Yeah. Oh yeah, we make windows. That's good.

Leo Laporte (00:43:41):
But in their events, it's still a multi-billion dollar business. I mean, it's very important to Microsoft, but yeah, I understand the takes

Paul Thurrott (00:43:48):
Waivers. The thing thank this task is, here's this, like you said, it's a multi-billion dollar business. I don't remember the, at one point, I did some just napkin math. I mean, somewhere in the order of eight plus billion dollars in revenues [00:44:00] a quarter. But you lead that business. What's your job? You going to grow that? No, just don't lose it. That's all you get to do is just not screw it up. And that has to be hard,

Leo Laporte (00:44:11):

Paul Thurrott (00:44:11):

Leo Laporte (00:44:12):
You're not in the fun part. You're not in the fun part. So the answer is he was both jumped and pushed, like this illustration.

Paul Thurrott (00:44:21):
He was Jewish. He was just, I dunno,

Leo Laporte (00:44:26):

Paul Thurrott (00:44:26):
Don't know. Wish him

Leo Laporte (00:44:28):
Still do. We wish him well, I know you don't, but do [00:44:30] we

Paul Thurrott (00:44:30):
Wish him well? No. No, no, no. Listen, the truth is I don't wish anyone ill. I wish things were different between him and I wish things were different for Windows, but do you think this

Leo Laporte (00:44:42):
Is good for Windows? Yes. And

Paul Thurrott (00:44:45):
Surface? He's not, I dunno, buzzer. He is not a malicious presence like Steven Sinofsky was. But you know what? What's worse? Like chaotic evil or just like, eh, I don't know. Benign [00:45:00] evil. I really don't know. Or just benign neglect, right? Yeah. I don't know. And by the way, as this was true of Terry too, remember, these are people who presided over a diminished business, right? This was no longer the focus. So Steven Sinofsky at that time was still riding the wave of we still Matter, even though it became patently obvious during his reign that it did not. But God, what a mess to what an awful responsibility in so many ways, right? Yeah. Terry made horrible mistakes [00:45:30] in the name of trying to meet the requirements that Satya Nadel laid out for him, which was make windows make sense. In this cloud, it's kind of a

Leo Laporte (00:45:37):
No-win situation.

Paul Thurrott (00:45:39):
Yep. Yeah. I assume, and I'm sure this is true, resources that were available to Panos Spinone, were far fewer, far less money, far fewer resources. So is that his fault? No, but I don't know all the details, so we'll see. I think the history on this will be written eventually. I hope to be the person [00:46:00] to write that, but whatever. It's fine. I just want to know what happened, and we'll see.

Leo Laporte (00:46:06):
There you have it. He was Jed.

Paul Thurrott (00:46:08):
He was Jed.

Leo Laporte (00:46:11):
Alright. I don't want to spend the whole show on this because really the most interesting thing to me in the weeks at Microsoft News was this leak. Now, tell me, first of all, how did it leak?

Paul Thurrott (00:46:22):
I don't know actually how it leaked, like the mechanism by which it leaked, but there was this giant leak of documentation that came up out [00:46:30] of the F T C hearings from back in June. Actually, this stuff is not dated from June, 2023. Most of it is from I think, May, 2022. It was

Leo Laporte (00:46:42):
Probably in discovery that this

Paul Thurrott (00:46:44):
Was, yes, it was last year. Microsoft was providing information to the Ft C with regards to the questions they were asking.

Leo Laporte (00:46:51):
There was one document that they were providing and

Paul Thurrott (00:46:56):
Discovery. There were a bunch of attachments, and

Leo Laporte (00:46:57):

Paul Thurrott (00:46:59):

Leo Laporte (00:47:00):
[00:47:00] All these other things got

Paul Thurrott (00:47:01):
Attached. That's based on the documents that I have seen. I will say that's probably roughly right, based on the way they're formatted. It appears that there was supposed to be a very small thing as the mother looked. Whoops. So of course, when this kind of thing happens, I guess I don't know how it became public. It probably appeared somewhere on some public site or something. I don't know how it happened. The immediate [00:47:30] blowback here was like, well, hold on a second. Who did this and why? Right. Is it someone internal to Microsoft trying to screw them over? Is it someone external to the FTC trying to say, see, here's the smoking gun that we weren't able to talk about, or something like that. It turns out it was just a mistake, and it was Microsoft's fault. They acknowledged this internally and thus externally, they knew that was going to leak, and just in case it didn't leak, Phil Spencer came out and said, as much publicly on Twitter, [00:48:00] it was a mistake and we need to do better.

It's embarrassing to them on a number of levels. It's also a problem for Microsoft's partners because a lot of privileged information about third parties, including partners and competitors, came out as part of this thing, which is one of the many reasons it's so fascinating, but problematic for Microsoft. I will say. It doesn't take an analyst of any particular skill. I hope to understand [00:48:30] that this is a problem for Microsoft on a lot of levels. They have a big chunk of this is their strategy for roughly the next 10 years for Xbox. They have said things publicly, which are contradicted by this leak. For example, Phil Spencer said, we have no plans for a midseason replacement, is the way I call it, like a midlife cycle upgrade or whatever for the Xbox Series X and S. [00:49:00] Yeah, they do, and it's coming up. Two of them are coming out next year, so that's okay. That's embarrassing.

But there's also this thing, well, first of all, this is, like I said, is about a year old, so things have changed. So now people have this idea about what's coming down the pike. That means that they might have the wrong information because things do change, and [00:49:30] two, it means, oh, look, the next Xbox series X and the next Xbox series SS are better than the current ones. Let's see. It's September. I could wait a few months maybe I'm going to stop buying the product we're selling today. There's a reason you keep this information separate or private, I should say, or secret. When Google comes out and says, Hey, this is what the Pixel eight looks like. They do it because it's like a month before the new phone's coming out, and they're not selling any phones now anyway, right? But this far in advance, right?

[00:50:00] I mean this far in advance, you're screwing up a year of sales here. They're offboarding, and you be influencing partners. There might be partners who say, you know what? I don't want to go through this again. Maybe I'm going to lean on Sony a little bit here, or go in a slightly different direction. So at a high level, the, oops, I keep screwing up the, sorry, I screwed the notes. Lemme fix that. It's not desirable. Let's put it that way. This is not, it's not good, but we consider accurate, right? Because [00:50:30] Oh, it's a hundred percent. Yeah, they've acknowledged it. Oh, it's real. Yeah, this is real. Oh my gosh. Oh gosh. Here's the high level. There is an Xbox Series X refresh coming next year. Instead of a big rectangular, kind of 2001 a space out as you looking thing. It's a trash basket.

It's circular, it's a cone or whatever. Not a cone. It's a cylinder, a minor thing, wifi, six E instead of six, Bluetooth, [00:51:00] 2.5. There's a new Xbox wireless standard coming for lower latency, et cetera, et cetera. Better power management. Of course, there's nothing about the things that maybe are problematic for the current console with regards to performance enabled, the ability to hit four K, six 60 frames or expand the storage with a standard N V M E M two hard drive or blah, blah, blah, whatever. There's none of that. But this is expected to come out in the fall of 20, 24 [00:51:30] or $500 accordingly. According to this, at the time, two terabytes of storage, et cetera. Yeah, it looks pretty desirable. It looks like a good, it looks nice. Yep. It looks nice. Yep. Which, yeah, it does. You're right. Xbox Series SS not changing.

Oh, I should say also disc list. Careful how you say that. The current X, of course, has the disc. I often misspeak. I want to be careful there. The S in the current generation does not have a drive. This one also does not have a drive. So yeah, nowadays you don't, I haven't [00:52:00] put anything in my disc. I've never stuck a disc in there. I've never stuck my disc in it. Not on purposely, not on purpose. So moving on. There's also a Series S refresh coming in 2024. That's going to be a little, or was, we don't know if it's going to happen. I think it's a little earlier. Same form factor this time, which is kind of interesting. They're not updating that at all. That's okay. I actually think the series SS is one of those perfect designs. It's kind of [00:52:30] a nice deal.

Still white, one terabyte of storage, just like the black version we have now, same low price, 2 99, same wifi, six E and Bluetooth 5.2, and also the new Xbox wireless standard or whatever, and more power management, et cetera, et cetera. So these are just, they're, but they're, they're refreshes of the existing, and I'm sure there's some cost reduction going on as well. There's a new Xbox controller [00:53:00] with an accelerometer and wait for it cloud connectivity. When right before Google killed Stadia, no, actually right after Google killed Stadia, I wrote an editorial where I wrote, I said, stadia is dead, and Xbox needs its best feature. And its best feature is what's in this controller, a cloud controller. Yeah, right. It's a direct link wifi to this cloud. Instead of using the latency or whatever going from the console, whatever the devices, because you can use this controller with [00:53:30] an iPad or a smart TV or whatever. So this was very clearly the key innovation that Stadia brought to the game, and I feel bad about what happened to Stadia. I got to be honest. I thought that was a great service. I think it was the best cloud streaming service at the time. Of course. Now, maybe things have changed. Luna copied this. By the way, Amazon Luna also uses direct connect, right? So this is the,

Leo Laporte (00:53:54):
Just for people who don't know, instead of hooking this up to the computer that [00:54:00] is then hooked up to the internet, this joins the internet separately.

Paul Thurrott (00:54:04):
The thing, right? So the Achilles heel for cloud gaming, for cloud streaming, or whatever you want to call it, is lagging latency right now. There's certain things, no one can do anything about your internet connection. But the key here, especially for fast games, especially for three D games, especially for the holy grail, which I honestly never happen, call of Duty multiplayer, right? Any first person shooter, modern four K 60 frame, or second, [00:54:30] whatever it is, three D wonderfulness in real time with multiple

Leo Laporte (00:54:35):
Players, and some of them impossible playing on their own machines as opposed to in the cloud. Then they have no

Paul Thurrott (00:54:42):
LA latency. It's a disaster. It doesn't work. So how do you fix this? Well, the steps you can take today, there are three stages of performance slash lack of latency that you can achieve with an Xbox controller. The worst one is to use an Xbox controller with Bluetooth, with whatever device. It doesn't matter if it's [00:55:00] pc, a console, your iPad, your tv, whatever. It doesn't matter. That's the worst because Bluetooth is terrible. The next worst is the Xbox protocol, also wireless. So it's wireless connection, but you have a native connection to, in this case, the console, because you do have that in the console. Remember, people forget this too. This was supposed to be part of the pc. PC makers were going to add this chip set to their computer, so you could have an Xbox wireless connection that was low latency never happened. Maybe someday we'll have a little set top box. A lot of the leak stuff talks about that, [00:55:30] by the way. There's a lot of that talk in there. We'll get to that. And then the next step, the best step so far today is wired A U S B C on today's controller wired connection to the device.

And that's as good as you can do, but you're still going through a thing to get to the internet and you're still getting the information through a thing. So the connection

Leo Laporte (00:55:50):
To the computer, which the Zen connected to the internet, adds latency. Whereas if you have a wifi controller that's going directly to [00:56:00] the internet, it just reduces a list of latency.

Paul Thurrott (00:56:04):
So you actually just kind of touched on the point of this, which is in a world in which increasingly people will be streaming games supposedly, right, or whatever, in a world which people could be, they today cannot play effectively against people who are using a dedicated device. A huge disadvantage and a huge part of it is the latency issue. So what we're going to do instead is connect the controller as Stadia did directly to the cloud. Now, if you're playing on an Xbox or [00:56:30] a PC or whatever, I mean honestly for you, you probably want to do the normal thing. This is a wireless thing. It's going to happen automatically. You don't have to think about it. But the idea here is that if you are connected wirelessly to an Xbox console, a PC or whatever device, and you're playing a game, whether it's on the device or in the cloud, it should do the right thing. And so this new controller will support that. And the best approach for cloud gaming is that thing we were talking about, because this is the only way you can reduce the latency. [00:57:00] Well, other than efficient protocols and whatever, but I mean, this is as far as the step you can take. You can't direct hardware into the internet, right? But we can eliminate that extra step in the middle and connect directly. It does make a difference. It

Leo Laporte (00:57:13):
Really works with Luna and it works with

Paul Thurrott (00:57:14):
No, it really does. Yeah. I played the same game on Stadia and Xbox, and I don't think I ever did the same game on Luna and Stadia, but Luna and Stadia both had an edge at the time. This is now a couple of years old, and I think it was because of this controller,

Leo Laporte (00:57:29):
And both [00:57:30] of them had their own, sold their own controllers to do this. You can't use a regular controller to do this,

Paul Thurrott (00:57:35):
But this slide

Leo Laporte (00:57:36):
Does not look like it's for consumers. This slide looks like it's for retailers.

Paul Thurrott (00:57:41):
So this slide is from a presentation that, no, so none of these things are for retail. So Microsoft, there's a couple of different big events that the presentations that leaked came from. Oh, okay. They're internal presentations, at least one of them was to the board of directors, actually at least two of them, probably [00:58:00] the idea at various points in time, they had to go in front of the board and say, here's what we're doing. Here's our strategy, here's where our business is now, here's where it's going to be in X number of years. And the big one, and I think that's what this is from, was literally, well, at the time, it was a 10 year strategy outlook. It was how we got to where we are, where we're going, how this looks like a continuum. We've always had this idea in our brain and what's going to change and what the market opportunity [00:58:30] is. And by the way, this particular slide deck, which was for the board of directors, lemme just, that makes

Leo Laporte (00:58:39):
Sense. Yeah, yeah. This is clearly

Paul Thurrott (00:58:41):
Internal, but the title of this one, which is funny. Go find it. No, you're going to love this. This is worse than you think is Achieve Industry Leadership by 2030.

Leo Laporte (00:58:56):
I'm sorry, I shouldn't

Paul Thurrott (00:58:57):
Laugh. I know, I know. And at that time, and [00:59:00] this was 2022, Microsoft put itself in fourth place in the gaming industry behind Tencent, 33 billion in revenue, I guess probably annual revenues, Sony 25 billion Google, 18 billion, they were 16 billion. This is, sorry, full year, 2021. And I dunno if that's fiscal or calendar, probably calendar because these other companies have different schedules. Apple and Nintendo at that time were tied for fifth place with about 15 billion in gaming revenues. It's a

Leo Laporte (00:59:28):
Stretch goal. That's a stretch [00:59:30] goal

Paul Thurrott (00:59:31):
Achieved dominance, but they spell out how are we going to get there? They get the roadmap and there's a roadmap and it is incredible. It's very interesting.

Leo Laporte (00:59:41):
When you look at it, it's not completely cray cray, right?

Paul Thurrott (00:59:46):
No, no, no. I don't mean it like that. It's just incredible how much there is. There's a lot of, it's

Leo Laporte (00:59:52):
Just the kind of planning a big company does.

Paul Thurrott (00:59:56):
Plus they just never remember see it, right? So Satya Nadella [01:00:00] takes over Microsoft Cloud, he goes to everybody very pragmatically. A, you have to justify your existence. If you're not making money, we're going to start having a conversation. B, you need to make sense within my Microsoft and his Microsoft is cloud, right? This is when Microsoft 365 took over on the office side. Windows was in kind of a tough spot. There's really no clear cloud play there. Now, we finally have an AI thing, we'll talk about a little while, but for a long time figuring that out. By the way, windows [01:00:30] 365 is not the answer before anyone says that. That is not, no one really thinks that's the answer, but it's part of a puzzle, right? Xbox was in slightly better shape because Microsoft has this cloud computing prowess and they can make these investments, and they do, and there's lots of figures about how much money they pumped into this stuff to A make X cloud and B, try to make it successful, have it compete against whoever's out there at the time, GForce now, or Sadie at the time, or Luna or whatever, and have it make sense as part [01:01:00] of a continuum of Xbox ecosystem products and services where console becomes less and less over time, as I've always argued, that they literally make that case.

The percentage of revenues derived from Xbox consoles they predict will go down over time. And the percentage of revenues they get from things like software and services, which is game sales and in-app purchases and blah, blah, blah, it's going to go up. But this requires them to basically double their revenues over a 10 year period. [01:01:30] I'm not saying it's impossible, I'm not. But that requires investment. It requires all that stuff happening in Azure. It requires putting Xbox Series X machines and data centers and 27 of their 57 Azure locations or whatever it's, or territories or whatever the term is. There's all kinds of stuff. It's big. So to me, this is rather incredible and you transition to what you transition to elsewhere in the company. The thing, honestly, that started in the late [01:02:00] 1990s with software assurance and volume licensing, which is basically monthly subscription, regular revenue rather than big BOP releases every five to eight years we run console and occasional big releases on the software side from some of the bigger game titles, you just turn it into more of a smooth path, hopefully going up, but not big spikes in valleys, but just something a better, healthier business, which a lot of people like me and normal people who [01:02:30] are paying 1800 subscription fees every month might complain about, but also recognize this is the world, right?

Leo Laporte (01:02:35):
Were there any surprises in here or, I mean this all kind of makes, oh, really? Okay.

Paul Thurrott (01:02:41):
Yeah, no, there are surprises mean

Leo Laporte (01:02:43):
It kind of makes sense. I mean, we didn't know the specifics, but this seems like a cease reasonable plan.

Paul Thurrott (01:02:53):
They allude to some things I want the details on. I've made the case for example, that Xbox is not profitable, right? Phil Spencer, [01:03:00] on at least two occasions I found so far has sort of mentioned this in internal emails. And he doesn't say as Xbox is not profitable. What he says is, as we have received some pressures from the board about the profitability, so you

Leo Laporte (01:03:15):
Guys have been bitching at us, and here's our response.

Paul Thurrott (01:03:19):
I mean, I like to see things that confirm or even debunk whatever. I just want to see the truth, right? So I don't really care. Do you think

Leo Laporte (01:03:26):
The whole thing was a board presentation that leaked out?

Paul Thurrott (01:03:30):
[01:03:30] No, it's not a board presentation, but a lot of it consists of board presentations. This thing, these images we're looking at are from a board presentation, a presentation to the board of directors of Microsoft. In other words, because we talked about Synsky and Surface, I mean, for that product to come to market, they had to get the sign off of not just the CEO e, but the board. And that was denied several times. It was only after both. And Bamer made an impassioned appeal to the board of directors that that [01:04:00] was allowed to happen. So they wield that kind of power. That's the

Leo Laporte (01:04:05):
Part of point, and the good news is that you don't lie to the board of directors. So no, no, you don't. Anything in this is probably,

Paul Thurrott (01:04:13):
Well, this, we're doing the right thing financially for the company and really the right thing, I think is the way we would say it for the company and the company being a publicly owned entity with shareholders. That's the point of it there. One, I've only gone through, [01:04:30] I've only written up a few of these. I'm trying to find these themes that I can pull out and turn it into a article. So I wrote about the thing, we just talked about this achieve industry leadership I just thought is so beautiful and God love you reaching to the stars like that. But also Microsoft's reaction internally to the PSS five reveal is very interesting. The timing on this is interesting because Microsoft and Sony announced their now current generation consoles at kind of the same time. They came [01:05:00] out with their specifications within two days of each other.

Sony came second. And the specifications, by the way, almost completely identical. You got to remember, Microsoft hid the Xbox Series SS from the world, and based on what I'm seeing so far, and I think from the board of directors until very late in the game, so all we had was the X and the PS five. We didn't know about two PSS five models yet either. And then they played a game of chicken with pricing because neither one of them wanted to come up first on the price. [01:05:30] And that lasted for several months. But the one thing that Sony came out that was dramatically better than the Xbox was the IO bandwidth, and it was bad, really bad. And so Microsoft, I don't know, three, four months later announced something called direct storage, which allowed them to keep up with the Sony IO bandwidth. And I don't know if this was always planned, but I can tell you that when they were discussing this problem before they announced direct storage, [01:06:00] no one mentioned direct storage.

No one said internally he don't worry about it. We have direct storage. So I'm kind of curious if that was supposed to come out later. And they were like, we got to rush this to market because we need it. Sony literally made the promise there will be no loading screens. They said this explicitly. People now apply that quote to Microsoft. I don't know that they ever said that, but the idea was this storage should be fast enough that no matter what's loading, it just happens and we just start playing. And honestly, that's not the case on Xbox [01:06:30] for sure. So their reaction anyway, the internal reaction, and this is people like Phil Spencer, satin Nadel is all over this stuff. And then other people on the Xbox team, also a woman who's on the board of directors were quite happy after Sony announced what they announced because in their view, they were neck and neck and everything's great.

And this was important because they got destroyed in the previous generation and they were thinking, we can come out and [01:07:00] we'll be neck and neck and we'll be in good shape. Now, unfortunately, history has shown otherwise, and it's not clear how Sony has pulled ahead so dramatically both companies faced component shortages. Obviously that was an issue that was coming up right at about this time. Sony, I feel like they handled that better. I don't know what that means. I don't know how they did it, but they had a better, they seemed to have a better handle on supply. They both came out at the same price. Although Microsoft [01:07:30] obviously has that cheaper version of the console that's less powerful, et cetera, et cetera. There's a funny moment though, after this back and forth, these executives are all talking about, everyone feels really good about it. Phil Spencer literally came out and lemme see if I can find this. He says, notice that where? Where's this?

We have a better product than Sony does. I know I shouldn't say this, but I can't help myself. We've all lived with seven years of defeat basically. By the [01:08:00] way, I would not agree with that obviously. No, this was that day, this before these products happened. Oh, okay. So everyone's going back and forth, so hasn't seen yet. No, they've seen the specs. So they're like, well, thank God we're fine. We're going to be fine. And I don't know how you get word better out of the specs, honestly, I would say they were neck and neck is what it looked like. But except for a couple of things where by the way, Sony was ahead. But anyway, after all this conversation, Satya Dilla chimes in with two sentences. He says, [01:08:30] this is really great to hear, Phil. Neither of us has announced pricing. Right? He didn't even know.

He didn't know. And it's like, no, we didn't. And that wouldn't come for many months actually. And then that email was sent from mail for Windows 10, it says, so he was using that piece of crop mail program for Windows 10. It was amazing. The most powerful person at Microsoft. So that one's funny. One I haven't written about yet, but I think we should discuss this. Very interesting. And the timing of this is very interesting is Microsoft, [01:09:00] at the time in which they were talking about making that deal with TikTok and outside of the company, everyone was like, what are you doing? What on earth does this have to do with anything? So the argument that they made internally, which may or may not have been the argument they made externally, right? I honestly don't, I'm going to go back and look this up before I write about this, but I just don't understand the TikTok thing, but here's the argument they made internally.

They needed a strong consumer play and they felt like this was a great example of a modern, [01:09:30] popular online service that was just going gangbusters with younger people. And so I don't know off the top, it doesn't matter who said this, so someone possibly a board member or I'm going to look it. I don't want to say what this doesn't matter, but anyway, this guy went to town on this. He's like, I'm sorry, this is the stupidest thing I've ever heard, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. He says, you know what? We have been a consistent number two in gaming. We have a strong franchise. We are making the shift to the cloud where Microsoft has this huge strength, [01:10:00] maybe immersive Mr. VR over time. We'll see. Why don't we buy Nintendo? It's by Nintendo. That got a lot of attention. So this is what's amazing.

Now, this is the person we both know. Chris Capella wrote back after a couple of emails. He says to this person, I totally agree that Nintendo is the all caps prime asset for us in gaming and our most likely path to consumer relevance. I've had numerous conversations with the leadership team at Nintendo [01:10:30] about tighter collaboration, and I feel that if any US company would've a chance with them, we are probably in the best position. The problem is Nintendo has a lot of money and they're not for sale, right? But they interesting. So at this time, they had two fairly active merger and acquisition discussions going on Warner Brothers Interactive, which I'm not sure I'd ever heard about, and zenax. Now they bought Zenax. EMAX is the [01:11:00] Bethesda company. They own Doom and all the ED stuff and all that stuff. They did buy Xanax. But then at the end of this email, he says, I love this discussion looking at opportunities, blah, blah, blah.

Nintendo would be a, oh, actually that's Phil. I'm sorry. Oh, that's Phil saying I totally agree. I'm sorry, sorry, sorry. That was from Phil Spencer. I'm sorry, not Chris capm. Sorry. He says, oh no. So it's Chris Calculator says, sorry, I'm not going to out fill on the list of possible [01:11:30] gaming acquisitions. Now remember, this dates back, I'm sorry, this is from 2020 that we've shared with the board, but I will say we are focused on great content companies that would help us improve game Pass, deepen our PC and mobile content, and help us in regions in the world where Xbox has had less success to date, there have been lots of rumors, so he is not really saying anything, right? Of Microsoft being in talks with a variety of content players like Warner Brothers, ea, et cetera. Yep. Meaning Activision Blizzard, [01:12:00] right? I mean, and that's what came out of that, et

Leo Laporte (01:12:02):
Cetera. Yeah, they're the et cetera.

Paul Thurrott (01:12:06):
If Microsoft, did

Leo Laporte (01:12:07):
Anybody mention in any of these memos, regulate regulatory issues with these acquisitions? If Microsoft bought Nintendo, I think you'd definitely see

Paul Thurrott (01:12:17):
Some. So if Activision Blizzard had never happened, if Zenax had never happened, right? Microsoft trying to buy Nintendo, assuming that somehow that becomes possible, would have received the same exact regulatory scrutiny [01:12:30] as Activision Blizzard did. That's my guess. It would've been this horrible in the wake of Activision Blizzard, this is never happening. We just need to be honest about this. There is no chance on earth of them buying them, buying Nintendo. I don't think there ever was. Realistically, I don't. Nintendo has never really been for sale, per se, and they're doing great, honestly. I imagine

Leo Laporte (01:12:50):
These kinds of discussions happen a lot in corporations and it's just fantasy role playing. It's not,

Paul Thurrott (01:12:57):
Well, people talk, all these upper level [01:13:00] executives know everyone.

Leo Laporte (01:13:02):
I've talked with Lisa about buying c n, and I think if it could to go downhill, maybe we'll have a shot at it. I don't know.

Paul Thurrott (01:13:09):
So I made a joke about this on Twitter, and it was based on this quote where he said, I can find this. It's my favorite favorite quarter of the year, if I can find it. Microsoft still, Spencer says that acquiring Nintendo would be a career moment, to which I said that would be me like acquiring [01:13:30] Def Leppard because I like the music. It's

Leo Laporte (01:13:32):
A career moment for Paul. Yes,

Paul Thurrott (01:13:34):
It would be a career moment. It's like, guys, what are you doing? Play a song. I didn't pay. I own you, man. I own you. Let's go. Let's go his. Put some sugar on me, baby. Come on. Like his back right now. Exactly. Yeah. It's a dream. I mean, it's always, it's a

Leo Laporte (01:13:48):
Dream. It's a fantasy. Yeah,

Paul Thurrott (01:13:50):
Sure. I think honestly, the message behind that statement, however, is a very positive one, and it is, I think the Phil Spencer legacy [01:14:00] and why this guy is so great compared to so many of the people who might otherwise be in his position, which is this, he really doesn't want there be exclusives. He really doesn't want it to be us against them. He really wants games to be, he's a gamer. I want my games to be everywhere. I want your games to be everywhere. He wants everyone to partner and do the kumbaya moment and all that. He really wants this, and when he says the career moment with a Nintendo, I think what he's really saying is, any link up with anything [01:14:30] we could do with them, any way we could be more important to each other and benefit our collective audiences is a win.

And honestly, I think that's his greatest. I think that's Phil Spencer. I just think he's amazing. So there's a lot more in this. I will, like I said, over the next week, I'm going to write more of this, so I suspect we'll go over at least a few things next week too, because trying to pull things, so many documents. So I'm trying to pull things together and find these themes, [01:15:00] and every once in a while, the consumer thing that I'll be writing next is Nintendo's part of it, but they talk about consumer and Microsoft and consumer is a big debate that happens in our community. Microsoft doesn't do very well with consumer overall. They used to make big initiatives in the consumer space, especially back in early two thousands. They don't really anymore, other than Xbox. Some people think they should just get out of this business still, they should just admit it. They're just an enterprise company. They're infrastructure. [01:15:30] Some people say, no, you could make a huge play here. The total addressable market of this is in the hundreds of billions per year.

We talked about every percentage point, remember of usage share with web search is like a billion bucks a year. The numbers are pretty similar in this space. I mean, if they could move up, if they owned Activision last year, they would've been the third biggest company in the world, a gaming company. If they had owned Nintendo last year, they would've been first. [01:16:00] So things can shift the market. So we'll see. Very interesting. I can't think of anything I talked about that surface leak. For me, that was kind of a big deal. There was a Microsoft event in the long run timeframe called a Vision. I got an internal event. I got an incredible dump of stuff. To me that was incredible. That was probably my personal biggest moment was the Longhorn stuff. But as far as Microsoft in general, this might be the biggest one.

I mean, [01:16:30] the NT Source code leaked at one point, remember? Yeah, but that, no, this is current, I think significant. I know it's Blockbuster. Yeah, the NT source code was 20 years old if, well, yeah, I mean there was a leak that happened. Oh, back in the day. They switched over to 2000 next year or whatever, but it was still Microsoft. I'm not saying this is a direct correlation, but Microsoft started sharing the source code with partners and governments after that, and I [01:17:00] think that was why. I actually do think that was why. I mean, you can make all your positive announcement points, but I really think that was the point.

Leo Laporte (01:17:09):
Let's take a break, and there's still more to come. The big AI event tomorrow. Amazon had their event today and said they're putting AI into Echo. As long as Echo doesn't start saying it's pumped, I'll be okay. Well, that was the thing. I really enjoy these Amazon events and I'm thinking to myself, is next year [01:17:30] going to be going to be panelists next year? Is this going to get weird? Don't do it. Just don't do it. No, I didn't get to see it. You saw it, so I will ask you about that. But also the AI event from Microsoft tomorrow, and we got a surface event coming up. Oh no, don't call it a surface event. It's not a service event, it's an AI event, but there may be with it. Well, let's see. We'll find out. Will there be hard work? We will find out.

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Paul Thurrott (01:22:17):
And I believe we can post pictures and even videos from there. Oh, so go

Leo Laporte (01:22:21):
To and watch. You'll do kind of a live

Paul Thurrott (01:22:25):
Blog. Yeah, I'm hoping to. Yeah, right now there are people racing to implement a [01:22:30] kind of live blogging thing on the site. Great. So I hope to be able to do that on the site tomorrow, but I'll do something either way. So the thing that's most interesting about this, this event was the way it kind of was communicated. So they reached out to people we're going to have this special event in New York and people started saying, Microsoft's having a surface event. I was like, well, maybe. Maybe. It seems like there would be more than Surface. In fact, back when that was the talk, remember I said, it can't just be surface. They don't really have much to [01:23:00] say. It's got to be about Windows and the AI stuff. It's got to be this other stuff. So the second round of invites that had more detail, they spelled out, the way they wrote it was this is going to be about AI across Microsoft, and they specified things like binging Windows, Microsoft 365 and something like that.

So I said, see, this actually Surface was in the list. So my thing was always like, this is not a surface event. This is an AI event, and really it's the next milestone in the AI [01:23:30] push. The one that began with binging in February, Microsoft 365 copilot I think in March, and then the build announcements, the Stevia Batis three phase stuff, et cetera, et cetera, from May. And I wrote this huge editorial about it and then an internal memo leaked, and that's exactly what they're doing. So I was right about that. That's nice. But the memo internally from Yusuf Medi who now runs Windows by the way, says, we'll show the next steps we'll take to further building on our AI work and lead in this exciting area, [01:24:00] blah, blah, blah. We're going to keep the news confidential until we share it with the world later this week.

But I will lay out the vision for what's ahead. And that's literally how I wrote it. In fact, the way I wrote it was, well, I wrote, I basically just wrote this, it doesn't matter. Microsoft's goal is to spread AI across its various products and services quickly and seamlessly, and then I think this is the key bit, ramp up the addition of regular new features across the board just like it did with Microsoft Teams, but now not just for one individual product or service, but across the ecosystem. And the key to that [01:24:30] is this open standard for plugins that they talked about, I think at Build where they are going to use the same plugin model across the copilots chat G P T with open AI and binging, and this is what I was talking about. So when you think about what they've announced so far, the binging stuff is clear, cut it or not, it doesn't matter, but you have this chat bot you can interact with on [01:25:00] the web.

You can ask complex questions, keep a conversation going, learn more, et cetera, et cetera. And there's this absolutely value to that. If you use it through, they've integrated it into Microsoft Edge. And if you use the binging functionality and the Edge sidebar, now they added an image creative function, which you can also get at, I think it's or Crate or Creator, which is similar to Dolly and those other products draw me a picture of a pink unicorn flying in space, whatever. It's [01:25:30] neat. And then they've been adding, I mean, ever since this announcement, adding features, expanding access, et cetera. So lots of stuff going on there. Microsoft 365 copilot very well understood. They were very detailed about their plans for that. Windows copilot, not so much. I mean this is the way they announced it looked like kind of light on features. The way it is in preview today, very light on features. So you get all the binging stuff, the binging chat bots in there, but as far [01:26:00] as using it to control Windows features or figure out how to use Windows, features a little lackluster. And so I've been kind of waiting for some next event where this would get better and I think this is it. I think this plugin model is going to allow Microsoft and third parties to increase the capabilities of all of these things are all copilots.

They don't use that terminology in binging. Binging. That feature is called Binging Chat, [01:26:30] but internally, and obviously externally you can see it. Really, it's a co-pilot and Stevie Petit explicitly referred to it as a co-pilot in his talk. If you go back and watch or listen to that, I remember

Leo Laporte (01:26:42):
That. Yeah,

Paul Thurrott (01:26:44):
So I can hear a crowd.

Leo Laporte (01:26:48):
Really? You hear a crowd?

Paul Thurrott (01:26:50):
Oh, because Richard's here.

Leo Laporte (01:26:51):
Oh, Richard's here.

Richard Campbell (01:26:53):
Story to complicate works, but we got in a little early.

Leo Laporte (01:26:56):
We're thrilled. There is Richard Campbell. Where are you? Richard

Richard Campbell (01:27:00):
[01:27:00] Air New Zealand lounge in Auckland. My flight to Sydney. Alright,

Leo Laporte (01:27:07):
Well hello Auckland. What time? Wait, we're

Paul Thurrott (01:27:09):
Technically both right? Is it tomorrow? He flying to both Australia and

Leo Laporte (01:27:13):
Yeah. What time is it? Oh, it's

Richard Campbell (01:27:15):
Thursday here. And by the way, the AI event was amazing.

Leo Laporte (01:27:21):
We're going to get that double box up and and Paul can talk about it. We've already talked. That's right. He's seen the whole thing already. He [01:27:30] can tell us what they're going to say. We just, is

Paul Thurrott (01:27:36):
That how time works?

Leo Laporte (01:27:37):
No, not sure. We finished the Panos pane talk. We finished the memo leak talk and we're onto the AI event. But Richard, if you have any thoughts about the former

Paul Thurrott (01:27:54):
Please? Yeah, I mean if you heard anything about Panos Pane for example, nothing

Richard Campbell (01:27:59):
New. You and I [01:28:00] had a chat yesterday or the day before about this. As much as I know it's interesting. It obviously was Sutton, it obviously was. I think he blindsided Microsoft because he was the probably publicly Bobby part of the event, so I don't know how

Paul Thurrott (01:28:16):
Friendly. Okay. I will say the one thing that was in the back of my mind was they're not really, I was saying earlier a lot of people were like, oh, it's a surface event. I'm like, it's not a surface event. I mean Surface is a part of [01:28:30] it, but honestly in the scope of things it's kind of the smallest part of it and I was wondering about his participation in this. I don't know. I'm wondering

Richard Campbell (01:28:40):
Realistically, how does Microsoft do anything other than AI events these days? I know at least for the rest of the year,

Paul Thurrott (01:28:50):
At least for the rest of this generation, I mean this is it, right? I mean I was saying earlier you might appreciate this comparison. I think thanks to this open plugin they're doing [01:29:00] and they're going to try to improve AI across the ecosystem in the same way that they improve teams very rapidly. I think there's going to be a similar initiative. So I'll say yeah,

Richard Campbell (01:29:21):
I mean it's definitely an ecosystem play, but that's what Microsoft knows how to do. So this is about harnessing as many people as possible to run on a gold rush and [01:29:30] some of it's going to be great and some of it's going to be terrible.

Paul Thurrott (01:29:34):
Yes. Well yeah, if you thought it was bad that they started describing spell checking as ai, wait until everything is ai, which is actually an editorial I wrote several months ago as part of my seven stages of coping with this AI thing, which was if everything is AI then nothing is ai. So we'll see. But yeah, you're right. No, definitely it's going to be a spectrum of capabilities, but [01:30:00] the people on my site and the comments are going nuts right now because of all the stuff that's happening. But one of the interesting debates is this topic and I want people to, we have to be able to separate the nonsense from the truly useful stuff and not miss the truly useful stuff because some of it is nonsense.

So we'll see how it goes. I'm very curious to see what happens, but I do think we're going to see, [01:30:30] and there was a leak by the way of a Yusef internal memo about this. You didn't get into any details, but yeah, we're going to lay out the vision for the future of AI at Microsoft and very specifically I would say on what I think of as the client, even though a lot of this happens in the cloud, it's the stuff for individuals, how this will improve the life of Microsoft's users, whatever they're using Windows Microsoft 365, Bing if you are, I got to help you [01:31:00] or whatever else Surface too, and Leo's gone, so I don't want him to miss this, but everyone's wondering about surface. I mean the rumors suggest we're going to get three very minor upgrades. Only one of them is in a class that a professional would consider buying or using, and that's Surface laptop Studio two, which I assume would be on your short list based on this is just rumors, but based on the rumor about that particular machine, lemme see if I can [01:31:30] find the exact quote here.

I guess, I dunno, I don't think it's not next. Now that said, Intel just announced Meteor Lake at kind of an off time, right? Meteor Lake being what would've been the 14th gen Intel core. They're now calling them something like Core Ultra where they're changing the branding, but typically we see the desktop chips in the fall [01:32:00] and then we see the mobile chips in the spring actually in the very beginning of the year, css, right? That's the kind of normal timeframe. These things are not arriving until December 14th. I don't know off the top of my head if they're desktop and or mobile parts, but if they are desktop, there will be a mobile version as well. If that's true, I wonder if the mobile versions might be a little bit behind as well. And it's so Microsoft and Surface to announce new computers on the [01:32:30] verge of a new generation release of processors. It's very typical.

Richard Campbell (01:32:35):
Well, I think everybody bought cycle between production problems, full stop and these higher global pipelines being picked up like gee.

Paul Thurrott (01:32:44):
Well, I mean unfortunately in some ways they've always been behind. Well, almost always. I mean, I don't know. I don't know. I don't know how to expand on that.

Richard Campbell (01:32:55):
And they claim to fame for Meteor Lake is some kind of AI dip,

Paul Thurrott (01:32:59):
Right? [01:33:00] I heard, and I think you might've heard separately, but that NPUs are coming to all surface computers. Supposedly this was a big message earlier in the year. I mean, if they release new computers at an AI event and don't have NPUs, that tells me a few things, but it tells me they're going to have to talk about their intention for this to be a feature of a coming generation. So they can't announce these computers at an AI [01:33:30] event with no AI capabilities. So I'm curious. We will see, speaking of which, we went through a bit of the Xbox League and it's massive and it's hard to conceptualize all of it. I mean some high level items that are very easy to understand like a next-gen console, whatever. But I'm trying to pull these kind of themes out from multiple documents, and one of them, by the way, is Arm as of May, 2022 [01:34:00] I believe, or sometime in 2022, and by now would've had to have been decided. In fact, they would've been designing the ships by now. The leading they were trying looking at, and their lead choice for C P U on the next gen Xbox is an arm C P U that would be designed or co-designed with a M D

Richard Campbell (01:34:22):
And I think that's a great idea as long as it can emulate the inbuilt chips that fast enough.

Paul Thurrott (01:34:27):
Okay, so I'm going to ask you what you think the definition of [01:34:30] a term is. I have my own idea because this is how they described it, but first, well, let me just ask you this. The term they used was forward compatible, so what do you think that means?

Richard Campbell (01:34:41):
Forward compatible. That is not backward. Thank

Paul Thurrott (01:34:43):
You. Right. It's a friendly way of saying not backward compatible. So they're going to forget about that issue, I think, and my guess is this thing's not supposed to come out or as of last year wasn't supposed to come out until 2028, is that they would solve the compatibility problem by streaming.

Richard Campbell (01:35:00):
[01:35:00] Yeah, okay. Because speed line's not going to get better in 2028. We're still going to have the same basic issue of streaming game.

Paul Thurrott (01:35:09):
Well, okay, so you're right. But to that point though, so other parts of this leak include a direct connected controller to the cloud, which is what Stadia did and Luna does, which helps reduce the latency obviously at that time, five, six years, whatever. We'll go buy better connections, et cetera. Yeah, I mean you're right, [01:35:30] but I mean if they go with a forward compatible platform, they do have this cloud streaming, all I can think is that's how they're going to handle that, right? I mean, that's how it looks to me. ARM is today on Windows on the verge of being relevant. We're praying to the new Via Gods that this will happen and happen soon. We'll see. Part of these leaks has to do with the transition [01:36:00] of Xbox as a platform from a standalone separate console product that has nothing to do with Windows to something where there's a shared infrastructure, and now this next generation version, it's all one platform. They say there was a lightweight Windows thing called Winex, that panel Spinney told Bill Spencer they could have and you could work with. And this thing is this next console is described as kind of a hybrid cloud console [01:36:30] and whatever the hell that means, but

Richard Campbell (01:36:34):
Well, and you can't tell me they know what it's going to mean in 2028.

Paul Thurrott (01:36:38):
There is unfortunately the most recent communication I found so far, and I don't remember who said this. Someone asked about whether this was feasible and whether it would happen. And the basic answer, and again, I can't remember who said this was there's a lot of inertia on the X 64 side, the Intel slash AMD side, and we'll see, [01:37:00] because they also have to get developers on board and we'll see the successor lack of success of Windows and Novia and whatever I think is going to play a role. Although actually, like I said, that decision supposedly had to have been made by now. So we will see,

Richard Campbell (01:37:24):
Do you want to talk about this AI event? Obviously I'm going to see it from Sydney,

Paul Thurrott (01:37:27):
So let me just summarize the few things we've [01:37:30] said so far about this event. I wrote up a big thing of my expectations, blah, blah, blah, which now have been confirmed by use of Medi internally. So people have been describing this as a surface event. I'm like, no, no, no. This is an AI event. This is going to be the next milestone in that continuum that included binging chat back in January, Microsoft 365 copilot, you probably know better than me, but I think in March the build announcements, the Stevie Batis three phase three types of AI applications, that stuff, the Windows copilot, [01:38:00] this notion of an open standard for plugins that will work across chat, G P T and the copilots and binging I think,

Richard Campbell (01:38:08):
Which I love. If we can recruit the companies that play

Paul Thurrott (01:38:12):
Ball. I was going to ask you this separately, but since you're here, I will just ask you what you think of this idea that I had this stupid thing that came out in my brain, which is that I believe, my thought is no one said this. I just sort of think it makes sense to me because you look at Windows copilot, it's kind of half realize right now [01:38:30] the plugins will help. More features for Microsoft will help, but what really they need to do is just really push on it. And I think they're going to add features to AI across the board where possible over the next year or two in a way that emulates what they did to improve teams over a similar time period where it went from 20 million to 300 million or whatever. The figures now users and finally caught the attention of regulators. But when we started, it was a simple little chat-based collaboration solution, and when we ended, [01:39:00] it was this crazy platform with tentacles of functionality going everywhere, and I think that's going to be ai. It's going to start out simple and it's going to get really full featured.

Richard Campbell (01:39:10):
The world had a huge internal ecosystem that must be implemented. It has a guaranteed set of customers,

Paul Thurrott (01:39:17):
And it's a clear value prop because they can, and they've said this, they will charge extra to use those capabilities.

Richard Campbell (01:39:24):
The biggest thing for me is where's your personality? Where's the person that's going to [01:39:30] your field Specter type that's going to be out there on the Windows ecosystem?

Paul Thurrott (01:39:34):
So that person, right, you must've seen this news. That person is use of Medi who if he didn't start in Windows, was in Windows when I met him in the late 1990s, went from there to Windows Live, M S N, whatever they might've called it on any given day, went to Xbox for a long period of time and was most recently a binging. He was the guy who did the binging Chat introduction in February. He's running Windows and Service Now,

Richard Campbell (01:39:59):
And [01:40:00] this would be his flag if you want to make your name in this company. This is a big flag,

Paul Thurrott (01:40:06):
Actually. I'm going to find a name and I'm going to throw, I want to see what you have to say about this. So as part of this leadership change, Microsoft will double down on its strategy and will build silicon systems and devices that span Windows client and cloud for an AI world. That team will be led by Pavan double Lurie, who will report directly [01:40:30] to ra, ra, whatever his name is, very sorry. A bunch of people will be working for him, including some key people we know from the surface team like Ralph Groan and Stevie Petite ish Windows Planning and Release management will continue to be in his team, I guess in that team. That's interesting. So what does that mean?

Okay, maybe I misunderstood who's doing what here? So commitment to Surface and [01:41:00] Mr. I guess mixed reality remains unchanged. So very little support use of Medi will take on the responsibility of leading the Windows and surface businesses with our O E M and retail partners. So that suggests to me that he actually is going to report to this Pavan guy. Do you know him? Does that name ring any bells? I don't. Okay, so it might be him. It might be that person that is in fact going to lead this push that you were describing, right? [01:41:30] Because it's AI across the company, so maybe that is actually the direct responsibility, so not use of many, I guess, but rather this other person

Richard Campbell (01:41:42):
With any stream group of folks, and let's face that Windows could use the gig of the plan. That 11 was kind of an odd duck version that now it's being cleaned up for enterprise, for being forced to it. It's not a bad time to be talking about 12. And of course it'd have to be AI focused that get the right people on the stage. [01:42:00] You've got three or four of the most important Windows-based software companies. Those companies by nature are recalcitrant. That's why they're still in play. They are fundamentally troublemakers and very focused on themselves.

Paul Thurrott (01:42:15):
I mean, ultimately the AI capabilities in Windows may be the least interesting in some ways no matter what happens. All

Richard Campbell (01:42:23):
Depends on who integrates

Paul Thurrott (01:42:26):
Well, but that's what, yeah, but that's sort of what I mean. In other [01:42:30] words, if Adobe integrates into it, in that instance you're using Adobe. There are examples of the three app modes that Stevie Bati mentioned that we already know about, which is fascinating to me. And obviously the things that are named copilot are very easy to understand. Those are the copilot, those are the side by side-by-side.

Richard Campbell (01:42:50):
Well, Stevie's doing his job as the tech development, which is to go across those teams and to create these examples.

Paul Thurrott (01:42:59):
So the second application [01:43:00] structure where AI is inside an app is kind of the main scaffolding. One of the examples he used was Clip Champ, which is amazing because that's something I've been super involved with it lately and the way he describes that is absolutely accurate to that app. It's like you turn these very complex apps with pro-level capabilities and you turn them into what, it's kind of weird, he said it a one click slider driven intent, right? More intuitive interactions. You don't compromise the capabilities, but there were fewer toolbars, [01:43:30] fewer deep menus. You just don't need them anymore. The final mode or whatever, the outside structure or whatever. This is the using AI as an orchestrator across multiple apps, plugins and services, something that acts like an agent, right? Something we were talking about in the very early days of net, my service or hailstorm or the interesting thing is when I started writing this article, I kept coming back to this notion of how are you going to get this right if [01:44:00] you can't get File Explorer?

And as I wrote that, I thought to myself, well, hold on a second. File Explorer is an interesting example of an application that has a plugin model. You install a zip app, you install a cloud services app, whatever, it's you right click and you get things in the menu. Windows 11 hides those, by the way, which is really annoying, but they're there. They're still there. You can still get to 'em. And I was thinking to myself, I wonder about this, and it turns out he said this explicitly, the Windows Shell is an orchestrator. He says, [01:44:30] in fact, it could be one of the most powerful orchestrators across apps content and the graph with ai natural language, you see the opportunities there, blah, blah, blah, whatever, but common plugin model from Windows binging, Microsoft 365, et cetera. It's

Richard Campbell (01:44:46):
Also Microsoft solution to being legislative against for any competitive practice.

Paul Thurrott (01:44:51):
That's great. I didn't even think of that, but a week or two ago I made the comment that Microsoft could architecture interactivity [01:45:00] or integration in office in all kinds of ways. The way they did it with teams was direct teams integration. Here's a teams feature and outlook. Here's a team feature over here, but if you did that as a plugin model instead, which is what they're saying now, they are going to do, by the way, they could have just plugged in teams into these plugs and yes, this is exactly right, and maybe this was influenced or inspired by regulation and it's the right way to do it. [01:45:30] This is the browser model. I want to use Windows, but I want to use Chrome. That's my choice. I want to use Windows, but I want to use Adobe's AI for image manipulation or whatever it might be, if that's part of a plugin model. I used to ask why Microsoft didn't have a default digital assistant choice, right? Back when they added Cortana to Windows, Amazon brought to Windows, I said, well, let's make this an open model, and it never happened, and of course [01:46:00] Cortana went away, whatever. But yeah, this is exactly the same thing, right?

Richard Campbell (01:46:05):
I'm only anticipating here sooner related to Brad Smith's going to needed all branch for the EU and Windows copilot would be that way.

Paul Thurrott (01:46:11):
Yeah. Yeah. Well in Microsoft 365 copilot too, because same deal. I like this because the right way, regardless of your stance on Microsoft has a monopoly or Microsoft abuses their power, whatever it is, this is absolutely the right way to do this

Richard Campbell (01:46:29):
And it offers the [01:46:30] most power like that. I view the whole best ingredient.

Paul Thurrott (01:46:33):
Plus that's how you attract all the third parties, right? Yeah.

Richard Campbell (01:46:37):
I really appreciate your thoughts around Scott, Kevin, Scott trying to actually on the C t O role again,

Paul Thurrott (01:46:44):
Have you interviewed him?

Richard Campbell (01:46:46):
I haven't. I've been on his shift too.

Paul Thurrott (01:46:48):
Okay. So I like his podcast quite a bit. I was supposed to interview him, I can't remember. I think it was right. I think the pandemic happened. It was right around that time. He's an almost shadowy figure. [01:47:00] He's never really had a big public

Richard Campbell (01:47:05):
Presence. I know that it's his nature either and

Paul Thurrott (01:47:07):
He's a smart guy and all that kind of stuff. He owned a com of 64, so he can't be all bad.

Richard Campbell (01:47:13):
We call him a build. He's not a knacker. He has to work at it,

Paul Thurrott (01:47:17):
And I think it was not coincidental we saw him at Build because I think he is playing a major role in getting Microsoft to do this AI pivot. And he's also playing a role, which is something again, before it was more [01:47:30] behind the scenes kind of thing, and in the notes I kind of wrote it as the Ray Ozzy moment. When you're at Microsoft and you're not a co-founder or you haven't been there for 25 years or whatever. I spoke earlier in the show before you came about Phil, my love of Phil Spencer, and part of it is every man thing. He's just a guy, but it's really his kind of open love of gaming and loving gaming so much that he doesn't want competition. [01:48:00] He wants everything to work together. He's kind of an interesting guy, but he's just different and we need more of difference. We've done the middle age white guy, I think for a long time, but new ideas, younger people, new ways of looking at things. This is the type of thing that is happening at Microsoft today, which I think is really positive. Kevin Scott is a middle-aged white guy actually, but

Richard Campbell (01:48:28):
Getting a little older than that, but

Paul Thurrott (01:48:30):
[01:48:30] But still kind of a different perspective. Different approach, different kind of person. And the very fact that he's uncomfortable on stage in the same way that I kind of despise spin for that, it almost endears me to him.

Richard Campbell (01:48:44):
I would face it. That was Bill's superpower too. He never got comfortable at any time,

Paul Thurrott (01:48:49):
Right? Yeah, right. Okay. And maybe that is the point because with Bill Gates, and I would say this is true of Kevin Scott and was absolutely not true of Pano Spinney. [01:49:00] There was substance there, and so it's like, oh, he's really stumbling there. It's shut up and listen. With Panos, it was always like, he's not saying anything anyway. He's not saying anything and we need more people like this who have something to say. There's smart guys. So anyway. Yeah, I'm curious. We'll see. I don't know if he's playing a role in tomorrow or not, but I hope he is, and I think we're going to keep seeing more of him. Ignite on and on. I think he's come out. I hope

Richard Campbell (01:49:29):
So. [01:49:30] He also happened to be right, he was heavily involved with getting open AI over to Agar, and so this is in the reaping bat. He made picked Miracle and had clearly affected the entire outlet. And in some ways, Kevin Scott is suddenly this win. We've found a way forward for the company. The boss is now bet on it. Now it's up to Hims, Carlay and into what it can be. Right.

Leo Laporte (01:49:57):
Richard, we're going to let you go. I know you have to go and [01:50:00] the sound is really pretty poor and we have to

Richard Campbell (01:50:02):
Take a break. It's too awful.

Leo Laporte (01:50:04):
But I appreciate you're doing the gentleman job of calling up. Hope you have a great time in New Zealand.

Richard Campbell (01:50:10):
Yeah, I was going to talk about old fashions, but you know what? I'll save it for another second. Save it.

Leo Laporte (01:50:14):
Save it. Yeah,

Richard Campbell (01:50:16):
Yeah. No, I may have been out drinking with some friends the other day and we drank a lot of old fashioned and I thought I got to ride about,

Leo Laporte (01:50:21):
I think an old fashioned

Richard Campbell (01:50:22):
Segment year old

Leo Laporte (01:50:23):
Cocktail. Next week will be wonderful. Something

Richard Campbell (01:50:25):
To look forward to. That'll be the plan. And we'll do it from Sydney. Thank you. Oh,

Leo Laporte (01:50:29):
You'll in Australia. [01:50:30] Okay.

Richard Campbell (01:50:31):
I will be in Australia.

Leo Laporte (01:50:32):
Run his Richard rocks on his way from Zealand to Australia on route. Thank you, Richard. Thanks guys

Richard Campbell (01:50:42):
All. See you later. Take

Leo Laporte (01:50:43):
Care. Bye-bye. We're going to take a little break when we come back more Paul. Sorry. Actually your A punishment continues. If you want more, Paul, you can get it as a member of Club Twit because Paul does a great show for our club [01:51:00] members only. Although we put occasionally as a little teaser, we put some on the YouTube called Hands-On Windows. And speaking of Clip Champ, that is the topic for the last couple of episodes. The final clip Champ, I think is either this week or next. Really good in depth examination of this cool app. Micah Sargent does Hands on Macintosh. We have the Untitled Linux Show. All these are in club. We also have ad free versions of all the other shows, the public shows like Windows Weekly, [01:51:30] and you get all of that for $7 a month. But wait, there's more. You also get access to the Club Twit Discord and all sorts of wonderful events that happen in there.

We're big fans of the Club Twit community manager, a guy named you might know him. Aunt Pruitt does such a good job. Lou Mareska will be his special guest on September 28th. Then Fireside Chat with John Scalzi. I saw Ant Reading S Skull's latest to get ready [01:52:00] for that. That's fun if you're a sci-fi expert. It's really done some good stuff with the sci-fi. October 5th, October 26th, the fireside chat with Anthony Nielsen. Stacy's book clubs coming up. Renee Rich, you'll be doing an ask Me Anything. Those are all club events. You also get to chat with other club twit members. 3, 4 5. I think it's now six 7,000 strong in there. What else do you get? You get the TWIT plus feed with stuff that happens before and after shows things that don't make it into the shows. Seven [01:52:30] bucks a month now, how much would you pay? Well, it's still seven bucks a month, $84 a year. There's family memberships, there's corporate memberships. If you're not yet a member, it helps us out immensely. We really appreciate it. Just go to twit tv slash club twit now. Now more.

Paul Thurrott (01:52:46):
What's it going to take to get you into this club?

Leo Laporte (01:52:51):
Just hand the Du Man five Finn Sawbuck

Paul Thurrott (01:52:57):
Back in the 1980s. They used to be like crossover [01:53:00] episodes of TV shows like Simon and Simon and Magnum pi.

Leo Laporte (01:53:03):
I always thought that was weird. Where does she wrote? It's so weird when Angela Lansbury shows up in Hawaii. That's weird. I don't want to see that. Yeah,

Paul Thurrott (01:53:12):
I'm not saying I'm going to appear on the Max Show per se.

Leo Laporte (01:53:15):
I think that'd be cool. We're talking in that case. We're that I'd like to see you can.

Paul Thurrott (01:53:21):
I'm going to crap all over the max.

Leo Laporte (01:53:22):
Crap all over it. Micah likes Windows, so I don't know. By the way, I want to thank him for Windows

Paul Thurrott (01:53:28):
Week. I like the Plenty [01:53:30] and I love them. I know,

Leo Laporte (01:53:31):
And actually I will not just as another programming note, I will not be here next week. We're going to Green Bay to see a Packers game Thursday night, so I'll miss the show next week. Again, I'm sorry. Apologies. Lisa says, don't tell anybody that we are going to have a club to meetup at the Hinterlands Brewery on Friday. So consider yourself not told there

Paul Thurrott (01:53:57):
Have been rumors about such a thing. I can. She's

Leo Laporte (01:53:59):
Worried there [01:54:00] are too many people which will show up and wow, I'm not too worried about that. I'm worried nobody will show up. So maybe that's the difference between her and me. She's the eternal optimist. Anyway, so I think Michael will be doing the show again next week. So thank you Micah. But then I'll be back. In fact, I am going to be traveling again next month, but I will be doing the show from Rhode Island with a hope better sound quality than Mr. Richie. Rhode Island is [01:54:30] sort of

Paul Thurrott (01:54:31):
Part of the country. You should

Leo Laporte (01:54:31):
Be fine. I should be. All right. Alright, on we go with a show. I've lost track. Where are we?

Paul Thurrott (01:54:40):
I'm going to blow through just a couple of final AI related stuff. We already briefly discussed these M P U powered Intel core to CPUs that are coming soon. Right? Cool. And the kind of weirdness of the off schedule announcement. And is this related to the Microsoft event? Is this related to maybe what Qualcomm [01:55:00] might be announcing? We can only speculate. Bing Chat got a couple of new mobile integrations, which is super important, but if you are a Microsoft Launcher fan, you can now have Bing binging chat in your search box, which is kind of cool. That's one of them. And then I think last week we talked about this feature coming to paint the inbox app in Windows 11 for background removal. And I mean, what a weird kind of high level feature to add to such a simple app when there [01:55:30] are all these other things that doesn't do that maybe would've been better ads first.

But this past week we learned that paint is also getting layers and transparency capabilities and what do these things all have in common? Well, we would describe this kind of stuff today as ai. I know people take umbrage at that, I get it. But I think that this is part of the Windows push with ai, like the Inbox apps also adopting these, one of three modes of AI integration, [01:56:00] and this is one of the three. So you have an existing apps app, you're adding capabilities to it. They're AI based. I think this is an obvious, it's visual, it's obvious, and I think that, not that it leaked, but because this is inside our previous stuff, it had to kind of go out into the world. So they're not really talking about it in the context of this event tomorrow, but I bet they are tomorrow. So we shall see. Okay, now

Leo Laporte (01:56:24):
We're not going to stream that event because we can't, but you'll be there. You'll live blog as you mentioned, [01:56:30] and then if people want to watch it tomorrow at 1:00 PM Eastern, they're going to put it on the site so you can stream it and then obviously we'll talk about it next Wednesday.

Paul Thurrott (01:56:42):

Leo Laporte (01:56:43):
I'll watch it. And then we talk about it on Twitter as well and

Paul Thurrott (01:56:48):
It's almost certainly going to be worth

Leo Laporte (01:56:49):
Watching. I Yeah, sounds like it. I don't

Paul Thurrott (01:56:50):
Literally know. I don't know anything other than what I've spoken about.

Leo Laporte (01:56:53):
I'm just frankly disappointed they're not streaming it. We would

Paul Thurrott (01:56:55):
Absolutely. I know I do a little

Leo Laporte (01:56:57):
Goofy cover it. Yeah. Alright,

Paul Thurrott (01:57:00):
[01:57:00] What else? We have not in the theme of Windows, which you may recall as part of the show title. Yes, I've heard that there isn't a lot going on this week directly other than tomorrow's event, but there have been no major new builds released since the last time we spoke. There was actually one or two release preview builds that don't mean anything. Unfortunately. There have been some app updates in the insider program. So Windows photos is also getting AI capabilities. Shocker, right? Background removal. I bet [01:57:30] there's going to be more Stepping tool and Phone Link are getting some minor updates, nothing major there, but it's interesting to see Microsoft finally making updates to inbox apps. I mean, this is something that actually languished for a long time and I think every build, it's like one little thing you like, what's the big deal? But I think collectively, as you move between Windows 11 versions, it's starting to add up.

It's starting to look kind of interesting. And then [01:58:00] I was getting prepared to write this big article like editorial about Chrome OSS and Chromebooks and the Achilles heel here. And my sister is a teacher and one of the things I was talking to her about over the Labor Day weekend is this notion that these institutions are cash strapped and they are going to Chromebooks for two reasons. One is no for one reason, it's cost, right? They're cheap, but they're cheap in ways that I don't think people understand. People in the Microsoft space, [01:58:30] we use PCs. It's like no, the thing about Chromebooks is they figured out a management scheme that most teachers can kind of handle themselves with little or no IT staff, and that's another way you save lots of money. The Microsoft approach is a lot more complex and expensive. The Achilles heel however, is the lifecycle, right? So Chromebooks, depending on the Chromebook, depending on when they're released, are not supported for very long. So what's started to happen at schools, including my sisters, is that they go this route, they go all Google [01:59:00] and then four years go by or five or whatever, and they have this pile of Chromebooks they can't even resell because they're not supported anymore.

Leo Laporte (01:59:10):
My daughter has and loves the Google Pixel book and it's going to be out

Paul Thurrott (01:59:16):
Of, that's a nice one.

Leo Laporte (01:59:18):
I five, it's got lots of 16 gigs of ram. It's a pc, it will go out of support in March. And she says, what should I do?

Paul Thurrott (01:59:27):
So I think for her, I think she might be okay. I'm [01:59:30] not as fully up on what Google is doing across the board, but I do know that Google is working to separate Chrome from ChromeOS, which I know sounds goofy, but that would allow the browser to be updated with security updates. What else? That would be

Leo Laporte (01:59:41):
Enough. That would be sufficient.

Paul Thurrott (01:59:43):
So that will help existing users what they're doing for new customers, because again, schools, these things pile up. Imagine you went with MacBooks or laptops or Windows laptops and five years go by whatever amount of years and you're like, all right, we're done with these. We are moving [02:00:00] on. And you could sell 'em. You could actually earn a little bit of money off of that sale and help fund the new things with the Chromebooks. They just go out of date whether you want 'em to or not, and now they're worth zero. So they go to landfills and the school actually has to pay to recycle them. Otherwise it's a huge problem. So Google announced, I think it was last week, that they're expanding the lifespan of Chromebooks to 10 years of automatic software updates starting huge next year. Huge. Yes.

This is what [02:00:30] they should have always done. Frankly, this kind of solves the problem. It's not going to hit on everyone's computers. So there's some asterisks here. Chromebooks released since 2021 will get security updates, right? Part of the problem is that the Chrome web browser and the ChromeOS are in fact integrated. This is what Microsoft did, right? With i e. And so they can't be updated separately apparently, but like I said, I know Google's working on that. That may help with this problem. [02:01:00] For people with Chromebooks older than 2021, it's still going to be a little bit of a problem. So I mean, it's not a bandaid that fixes every problem, but it fixes it going forward and it fixes it retroactively for the past three years or two. Well at that point, three years. So I think it's big. And the reason I mentioned this is a problem for Microsoft.

They've struggled in education in many ways, and one of the reasons a cost, and this was the one thing that they could, [02:01:30] and I was going to make this case in this editorial, this is the thing that Microsoft should market, that there is the cost that, but there's this cost you don't understand. And actually it may work out depending on the system you use and whatever that the Microsoft side might be, in fact cheaper over time. But now we can't say that anymore. So good for Google Smart took too long, but fine before today's this [02:02:00] week's blockbuster set of news. I think the big thing we were looking at over the past couple of months was some antitrust stuff, and Microsoft was involved with that with the Slack complaint from several years ago. The EU looking into it reports about Microsoft trying to make a concession and not working.

And then finally Microsoft just coming up publicly and saying, you know what? We're just going to nip this one in the bud and we're going to unbundle teams from office. We're going to charge a little bit less for office, not a lot less by the way, a little less. And we're going to let people or companies really [02:02:30] buy teams separately if they want it. And we're also going to do those integration bits we talked about a little bit when we were talking about ai, where there's going to be kind of a plugin model in office where other competitors can plug in their products instead of, so if you don't want to use teams, you want to use Slack. Some of those integration bits will appear across office. So that was their solution. Honestly, I thought this sounded pretty good, but there was a report in Bloomberg saying that this is not enough, and they're going to formally charge Microsoft with antitrust violations in the form of a statement of objections [02:03:00] because that's passive aggressive the way they do things in eu.

And we will see if and when that happens. This could take a couple of months, but so we're going to be in a holding padding for a little while. But of course the question is what's the problem? And I have a theory and it's based on the leaks we got, I think over the summer in the spring about Microsoft's behind the scenes attempt to mollify these regulators, which involved exactly what they said they were going to do, or at least the unbundling [02:03:30] part. And the eus answer to that apparently was it wasn't cheap enough that office without Teams should be significantly less expensive, not just $2 less per user per month. So there's probably some dollar amount where this makes sense, and I bet that dollar amount is how much Slack charges per month. Because the problem is if you buy office without teams, you save $2 per month, you go to Slack, we're like, you know what?

We want to use you instead. How much does that cost per month? And they'll say, depending on the size of your operation, they might say it's [02:04:00] $6, it could be $8, it could be $10, it's not $2. So you will still pay more for Microsoft 365 plus Slack. And I think that's the problem. Of course, forcing a company to charge the same price as a competitor is a little weird and we'll see. I'm just guessing Anyway, so that might not be it, but that's my guess. I think it's because it didn't meet the pricing need, which I have to say I pointed that out at the time. That was the one thing I was like, I'm not [02:04:30] sure if this solves the problem. Okay, surface event tomorrow, Microsoft,

Leo Laporte (02:04:38):
Did we mention that?

Paul Thurrott (02:04:39):
Yeah, Microsoft is expected to announce three surface products at the event. I don't think this is going to be a big deal in any way, shape or form. I think the point of having Surface at this event, aside from the fact that Surface tends to have a fall event, is to talk about AI innovation coming to surface in the future, not in these devices [02:05:00] because they're not going to have any AI innovation to date. The only thing that Microsoft's been able to talk about, God do they talk about it a lot, is this Windows Studio Effect feature a set of features, which are things like background blur in a video call, that kind of thing that require an N P U. Meaning today on surface, they only work on the arm-based version of Surface Pro Nine, which nobody owns, right? So who cares? But NPUs are coming as we know, to the X 86, well, X 64 side of the family. [02:05:30] They will not be in any of these computers. The only one that looks any decent is the Surface Studio two. It will have exactly the same design as its predecessor, which came out two years ago, by the way. So it hasn't been updated since then.

We'll see what the C P U is. The trick is the C P U, so we'll see knowing Surface 12th Gen 13 gen, I don't know, but if it does have a Meteor Lake, that would solve my complaint. I guess with this one computer, they could [02:06:00] say this is the first one on that side of the family. We'll see. And then the other two laptops will absolutely have out of date processors and are not interesting and are not physically different from their predecessors and shouldn't matter to anyone listening to the show, but I know sell it the 12.5 inch surface laptop, go three, same design, blah, blah, blah, 12th gen ship in that case, and then the surface go four, which is the 10 inch tablet with the kickstand intel N 200 C P U, [02:06:30] I think that's code word for what used to be called Pentium or something. It's crap process.

Leo Laporte (02:06:36):
They did drop the Pentium name. They did, yeah.

Paul Thurrott (02:06:38):
Yeah. So I hope this more, maybe there is. Well, you have caution said

Leo Laporte (02:06:44):
This is not a surface event anymore. It's an

Paul Thurrott (02:06:46):
AI event. Yeah, it's not a surface event, so we'll see. Oh, well. Okay, but that's happening, right? It's happening, yeah. Xbox, we had a bunch of Xbox news before, but just two small announcements. [02:07:00] We're in the second half of September, so now we're getting a small list of Xbox Game Pass titles that are coming now through the end of the month. None of these mean anything to me, although Microsoft has been pimping something called Party Animals pretty hard. Oh, I can't wait. I know.

Leo Laporte (02:07:20):
Party Animals

Paul Thurrott (02:07:22):
Less said about that Better

Leo Laporte (02:07:23):
Got them Knights

Paul Thurrott (02:07:24):
Paid free and

Leo Laporte (02:07:25):
Party Analysts finally here

Paul Thurrott (02:07:30):
[02:07:30] Fulfilling a promise slash threat that Phil Spencer made about two years ago, that future Bethesda games would be released on other consoles on a case by case basis. We now know according to one of those late documents, I guess that the Elder Scrolls six, which was announced before Microsoft acquired Zenax, which owns Bethesda, would be released on placed [02:08:00] ocean consoles, but now it will be an Xbox ecosystem exclusive. It will be on PC as well as the

Leo Laporte (02:08:05):
Xbox console. Will it be better because it's only an Xbox?

Paul Thurrott (02:08:09):
I mean, I feel like that question answers itself, but yes, obviously. I mean, it has an Xbox log. What are you talking about? Is it going to come in a green box? I don't even,

Leo Laporte (02:08:18):
That said about Starfield is, oh, it's better because we didn't have to do a PlayStation five version.

Paul Thurrott (02:08:24):
I don't even understand this question, Leah, what are you talking about? It's

Leo Laporte (02:08:26):
Just better that way. It's better for everybody.

Paul Thurrott (02:08:30):
[02:08:30] Just get

Leo Laporte (02:08:30):
An Xbox, you'll be happy.

Paul Thurrott (02:08:34):
Okay, so that's that.

Leo Laporte (02:08:35):
I actually love, I was a big Skyrim fan, so I'm looking forward to this elder scroll six. That'll be fun.

Paul Thurrott (02:08:43):
Speaking of which, do we ever talk about this, Starfield, right is a single player game. Do you not think that the future of this two, three years down the road at most, we're going to see a multiplayer M M O, whatever you want to call it, version of this, right? Absolutely.

Leo Laporte (02:08:55):
Isn't the begging for that? Yeah.

Paul Thurrott (02:08:57):
Yeah, I think so. That was a problem

Leo Laporte (02:09:00):
[02:09:00] In No Man's Sky was there were other people, but the universe is a big place.

Paul Thurrott (02:09:04):
Yeah, you'd never run into 'em. It was like, it's like Steven Wright joke and I have a map of the world, but it's one to one scale. It takes me a long time to fold it up. It's like you're in the universe, literally. Or like a George. R r Martins is big, really appreciate he created his own world and literally every single person who lives in it, it is described in this book. It's a lot of work.

Leo Laporte (02:09:28):
No Starfield unlike No [02:09:30] Man Sky because you teleport through space, and I think it would be a great multiplayer. I really do. I mean, it's really

Paul Thurrott (02:09:38):
Skyline, the space. It's a multiplayer. I think this has to be what it becomes.

Leo Laporte (02:09:41):
I'm sure they're intending

Paul Thurrott (02:09:42):
That, and this is actually where that instant teleportation feature starts to make sense because it's the thing you were just talking about. Right? Exactly. You want to just jump to see other

Leo Laporte (02:09:51):
People. Yeah, I don't want to ride horses all day. No.

Paul Thurrott (02:09:55):
Right. I mean, my butt would hurt more sitting in this chair for that many hours that went on a horse.

Leo Laporte (02:10:00):
[02:10:00] I was very sad because something went wrong with my Starfield Save and it's just won't load. So I'm hoping that the patches that they've put out in last week will solve the problem. Fix it. Yeah. That's sad.

Paul Thurrott (02:10:14):
I will say, I mean problems not withstanding, Microsoft does a terrific job in the Xbox space of keeping their core key apps, key games up to date and with new features and whatever. I think they're going to do right by

Leo Laporte (02:10:28):
Oh, I'm sure they will. This is the promise why you [02:10:30] use a console instead of PC gaming is because on PCs, the onus is on you on the console. In theory, they do it all for you.

Paul Thurrott (02:10:40):
That's been a big, and I mean, I'm not sure I can credit Phil Spencer exactly, but honestly this has all happened since he's come on board. It's a big thing. It's good. It's one of the benefits of the ecosystem. Cool.

Leo Laporte (02:10:50):
We can skip right to the back of the book and your tip of the week, Mr. Thra.

Paul Thurrott (02:10:55):
Yeah. So this is tied to something would've talked about last week, probably this ongoing digital [02:11:00] decluttering journey that I'm on. And because of the successes I've had, kind of expanding it to other things over time. And one of those is something I've been wanting to do for a long, long time, which is consolidating and organizing my online accounts. And in this case very specifically, I have Microsoft and Google accounts both personal and business, and I have done such a terrible job of what I use for what, and it's starting to cause some problems. So when I moved to, [02:11:30] the company I was working for at the time was using Google Workspace. And so my domain is on Google Workspace, which means my primary account, which is like me, literally my name is also my work account. And it means a lot of things.

But anyone who uses such a thing knows that when Google comes out with new services or new features for existing services, they often do not appear on the Google Workspace side. You can get it with a personal Gmail account, but not workspace. [02:12:00] Sometimes they come, sometimes they don't, but it's always been a little problem. But there's been like these things over time every once in a while where the mixing of work and home has been kind of a problem for me. I talked about moving my video archive up to YouTube, and not just to YouTube, but to YouTube as a public channel. And of course I use my pal account for that. And then I'm like, look, I'm going to use this for my site. I mean, maybe this should be the official YouTube channel. And then I was like, I'll change the logo.

I'll change the name, but I use [02:12:30] this account for YouTube. I use it for YouTube music. So I have the weirdness of, I'm using YouTube music and there's a logo up at the corner and it says, my identity is So I'm like, okay, I'm going to change this. That's not ideal. It's hard. And I am reminded of, I've looked into this in the past, I've made steps in the past to do this, and I could see very quickly why I stopped. It's hard, especially when you have what I had have, which is terabytes and [02:13:00] terabytes of data. So to give you one example, I'll talk about this within the epic as well, what I thought was 200, and I think it was 244 gigabytes of data in Google Photos. This turns out 470 gigabytes of data and just moving that between a workspace account and a Google account, like a Gmail account itself is difficult.

There are ways, right? I'll talk about that in the next bit. But just dealing with that amount of data is hard. If [02:13:30] you bring it down to A and organize it in some way, and you have your local collection and you want to move things together and then you got to get it back up into the cloud, this is a nightmare. So this is a really hard thing. I think if I were going to start this over again, I would do this a little differently. One thing that Google does support is I think it's called brand accounts, but they're like Subaccounts and I don't know if they work across the board like email and calendar and stuff, but they work with YouTube and YouTube music. So for example, when I made the Eternal Spring account, [02:14:00] I put that off of paul, but it's a sub brand.

It's like its own thing. So it has its own URLs and its own stuff, and it's separate. And honestly, that's not a horrible thing to do. But I will tell you, we talked about this when LastPass had their problems earlier this year and everyone was moving to bit warden to whatever else. One of the hardest things though at the end, so you go through the terribleness of it, and by the way, the data you have at an online account is about a million times bigger than the data you have in a password [02:14:30] manager. Obviously that data's important. It's sensitive, but it's still, it's a lot more data. So it's a lot harder to work with. The scariest thing you have to do, it comes at the end because once you've made all the changes, you got to go back to that original account and you have to delete the data. You can't just leave it there. And that's hard. It's really hard. So this is an ongoing thing, but my advice here is to not get into this position to begin with. Make sure you're using the right accounts for the right things. And if you are trying to make [02:15:00] this kind of a shift like I am, make a to-do list. Make sure you do it in order and take the time to do it right. God, it's just such a pain. It's

Leo Laporte (02:15:10):
Effectively the same thing as taking a picture of the keyboard before you pry off the key caps to clean it. Yes.

Paul Thurrott (02:15:16):

Leo Laporte (02:15:16):
You will never, you think you know the keyboard, you do not.

Paul Thurrott (02:15:21):
Yes. That is an excellent example. One of the things I did last weekend, I spent literally the entire weekend scanning photos and paper [02:15:30] items and things. It was my last big scanning activity. I'm done. I'm not saying there isn't more scanning to be done. There's always more. But I mean as far as stuff we knew that was just sitting there in a giant, it's done. Good feeling. It's awesome, but then you have to edit it and crop it and figure it out what date it goes to and put metadata on it. It's an awful, awful process. But one of the things I did do was if you picture photo albums where you might have descriptions of the pictures I did exactly. I took pictures of the those [02:16:00] just so when I organize them, I would know the dates. Smart know what you have, but that's the keyboard thing.

That's exactly that. So for people in the, I don't know if Microsoft has anything quite like this, but in the Google space for all of their problems, especially privacy, the one thing that Google gets right is they have a takeout service that lets you download all of the data that you have in any or all of your Google services. It's at accounts and is a direct, it might even be that slash takeout, but if you have any data in Google, you should look at this right [02:16:30] now. And that's true whether or not you're staying in Google, maybe you use Google for a little while and you forgot about it or whatever. Go look at this. The thing I discovered, like I said, I had 470 gigabytes of data in Google photos when I downloaded it, it was 550 gigabytes, and that's because there's a bunch of crap they put in there that I exercised out of there.

But JSON files and all kinds of other stupid stuff, you probably have more data in there than, so whether or not you're moving between services like I am maybe leaving the Google [02:17:00] ecosystem or something, it doesn't matter. Definitely take a look at this because you'll be shocked at how much stuff is there, and you can very easily, you could also remove it if you want, right? Obviously you can do that kind of stuff, but you might want to download some of that. So it's definitely worth looking at. Obviously things like Google Photos or on a personal level are important, your photos. And I also discovered, by the way, that when I downloaded this and looked at it, it was not what I thought it was because I thought Google Photos was the best version of my photo [02:17:30] collection. I thought it was the most complete and it is not. So now I have work to do to integrate it with my other photo collections and make sure it's one big thing, and then I got to push it back up to Google. So fun. Anyway, Google takeout is great, and you should please look at it. Use Google in any way,

Leo Laporte (02:17:52):
Please. One thing, one of our sponsors, my LEO photos, which is kind of a photo access or photo management tool, does [02:18:00] direct input for takeout. So you download the takeout file so you don't have to because takeout, if you look at 'em, it's a mess. It's not, yeah.

Paul Thurrott (02:18:08):
Oh, so they actually do, they'll

Leo Laporte (02:18:09):
Import it and it solves a lot of problems. So

Paul Thurrott (02:18:13):
Take a look at that. Sorry, I should say, actually, I forgot something because I'm not using this service takeout also allows you to export some of it to other services. In the case of photos, I don't remember the exact list. It's not to another Google Photos, which would've been nice. It is. OneDrive I know [02:18:30] is one, and I think maybe not Amazon photos, but maybe Amazon photos. But it'll actually let you export to some cloud services as well directly, which actually would be valuable. So I'm sorry, what was the name of the

Leo Laporte (02:18:43):
M Y L I O And there's a free version you can try for a single computer. I use it now. And one of the things

Paul Thurrott (02:18:50):
That does L I O M I L O

Leo Laporte (02:18:52):
M Y L I O, and they are sponsored, should disclaim that my Y L I O Leo. And one of the things they also [02:19:00] do is deduplication. So I have photos in a variety of different places and I wanted to consolidate it all, and then they do a good job of that too. So this may be a tool that will help you.

Paul Thurrott (02:19:09):
That stuff is horrific. I've used a nightmare, used so many apps to try to figure this out, out. I got to look.

Leo Laporte (02:19:14):

Paul Thurrott (02:19:15):
Good. Thank you.

Leo Laporte (02:19:16):

Paul Thurrott (02:19:17):
Okay, good, good, good.

Leo Laporte (02:19:22):
That was your tip. Where are we? And my pick. And your pick. That was it. That was everything. Was everything. You want to pick anything? We're not going to do booze.

Paul Thurrott (02:19:30):
[02:19:30] Well, so he's going to talk about old fashioned, old fashioned next week. I'll say even before I started down kind of a low carb, high fat diet, I was still really kind of doing a lot, mostly low carb for a long time. And I don't, I find things that are sweet to be overly sweet. And so I don't mean I invented, but my wife and I sort of invented a cocktail, which was kind of a halfway point between an old fashioned and a Manhattan, which is the [02:20:00] big difference there is instead of having a simple syrup of some kind for the sweetness in an old fashioned, you have a sweet for moh, which is not very sweet despite the name and has a lot less sugar in it. Clever. But maybe that's too dry for people. Clever. In the beginning I was like, we'll mix those two things together. We'll have half sugar, half for booth, and we'll find some mix and we'll call this thing an old hat. And I think I might have mentioned, I might've talked about this in an earlier show when Richie wasn't around, but since then I've actually switched fully to Manhattans because even that I find [02:20:30] to be too sweet. And of course now I don't want sugar. So anyway, Manhattan, if you're on a low carb or keto diet or whatever, doesn't move the needle on your blood glucose at all. Isn't that good? Which, yep, a hundred percent.

Leo Laporte (02:20:42):
I'm going to start drinking.

Paul Thurrott (02:20:44):
I mean, listen between, so what was the joke? I said, I can't remember the joke. It was like I was going to, well, this is not exactly it, but I was going to call it like the Manhattan Diet. Honestly. It's right [02:21:00] there. It's right there. It's right there. It's almost if you don't care about liver health, I mean, honestly. Yeah,

Leo Laporte (02:21:05):
There are other things. Yeah.

Paul Thurrott (02:21:07):

Leo Laporte (02:21:08):
My friend, you have carried this show mightily on the shoulders, those broad ketogenic shoulders of yours. And now I shall release you from your labors because

Paul Thurrott (02:21:20):
Next week we're driving right to New York. You

Leo Laporte (02:21:22):
Travel a lot now the kids are gone. You were in DC and then

Paul Thurrott (02:21:27):
Well, no, this is for the Microsoft event.

Leo Laporte (02:21:28):
Oh. Oh, this is for that. Are you going [02:21:30] to bring Stephanie though?

Paul Thurrott (02:21:30):
Wife's coming in. We're going to see Mary Jo while we're there, and

Leo Laporte (02:21:35):
That would be nice. We go

Paul Thurrott (02:21:35):
To eat and stuff, but yeah, we have to get there early tomorrow. So we're going to go tonight. It's

Leo Laporte (02:21:39):
An early start. Are you going to stay at the Yale Club?

Paul Thurrott (02:21:44):
No. We looked at, I was just telling that story to somebody. We looked at hotels in Manhattan, including the ones Microsoft Reserve for us, and they're, oh my god, 600 bucks a night.

Leo Laporte (02:21:55):
It's really

Paul Thurrott (02:21:55):
Outrageous. So we're going to stay in Jersey City, but

Leo Laporte (02:21:59):
Everything's [02:22:00] legal in Jersey, as they say in Hamilton. My friend Paul Thurrott T H U R R O T Go there tomorrow morning. Is it 10:00 AM Eastern? What time is it?

Paul Thurrott (02:22:14):
10:00 AM is the actual start of the event. Okay.

Leo Laporte (02:22:17):
You'll be live. We'll

Paul Thurrott (02:22:17):
Be broadcast. Yeah, 10:00 AM I'll be live blog. Well, I hope so. I mean, I hope I don't get lost in it, but yeah, my intention is to

Leo Laporte (02:22:25):
Watch, watch. I'm going to try watch for the deets and then of [02:22:30] course you'll be back next week, next Wednesday at 11:00 AM Pacific, 2:00 PM Eastern, 1800 UTC on live twit tv. That's where you can watch it live. You don't have to watch it live. You can download it on demand versions of the show at twit tv slash ww. There's a YouTube channel dedicated to Windows Weekly, and of course you can subscribe in your favorite podcast client and get it automatically. Richard will be back next week. Should be a lot of fun. There'll be a lot of more details about all of these topics. [02:23:00] Very interesting. I think we're going to learn more too in the next week. I mean,

Rod Pyle (02:23:03):
Not just like tomorrow's show, but I think even some of the other stuff, we're going to

Leo Laporte (02:23:06):
Be more to learn. So we'll see. There's more to learn. Be here next week. I will not. Michael Sergeant will be filling in. As I said, I'm going to Wisconsin for a green big game to celebrate our son's 21st birthday. I imagine some Manhattans will be consumed. Yeah, there you go. It goes good with any kind of cheese. It's nice. Well, that's all we got is cheese and brats, [02:23:30] so I'm thinking I'm ready. Right. Thank you, Paul. Have a great week. We'll see you next time on Windows Weekly, byebye.

Rod Pyle (02:23:37):
Hey, I'm Rod Pyle, editor in Chief at Ad Astra magazine, and each week I joined with my co-host to bring you this week in space, the latest and greatest news from the Final Frontier. We talk to NASA chiefs, space scientists, engineers, educators and artists, and sometimes we just shoot the breeze over what's hot and what's not in space. Books and tv, and we do it all for you, our fellow true believers. So whether you're an armchair adventurer or waiting for your turn [02:24:00] to grab a slot in Elon's Mars Rocket, join us on this in space and be part of the greatest adventure of all time.

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