Microsoft CEO Takes Aim at Google

Ballmer says Google's Internet-ad dominance won't last
By Jim O'Neill,  Newser User
Posted Mar 7, 2008 10:39 AM CST
Steve Ballmer, CEO of Microsoft, gestures while giving a speech during the opening ceremony of the CeBIT in Hanover, Germany, on Monday, March 3, 2008. The world's biggest IT fair will open its doors...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer did an animated, sometimes antic, on-stage interview yesterday at Mix, Microsoft’s annual conference for web developers, emphasizing that he has every intention of taking some of Google's advertising business and using Yahoo to do it, the Seattle Times reports. "Advertising on the Internet is a big thing, and will be the next super-big thing," he said. "Search ... at least today and for the foreseeable future, it is the killer application for online advertising."

Ballmer positioned Microsoft as the underdog in online service, saying Google has, depending on the country, 50 to 90% of the market. Asked why he doesn't sue them for antitrust, he said, "You want governments to sue people for antitrust."  Ballmer also said industry changes are pushing Microsoft’s core products—its operating system and software—increasingly to the periphery as online applications mature. What he didn't say is  whether he's seeking to buy the Seattle Sonics.