In my recent interview with Windows Live VP Chris Jones, I also got his take on whether Microsoft might take part in Google's just-announced OpenSocial platform as well as his thoughts on where the Mac fits into the Windows Live strategy. Here's what he had to say.
On OpenSocial: "I think on OpenSocial we're honestly just still looking at it. It's more of a gadget platform than a social-networking approach. It's a way to add gadgets to pages with a couple of extensions to it. That's been a very interesting thing for Facebook and it's taken off, and OpenSocial to me looks like a way for a set of people to try to participate in that phenomenon that's happened on Facebook. So, we'll just take a look at it and see as it evolves and as we listen to customers and developers if it's something we should do."
On the Mac: "We've always been real supporters of the Macintosh platform in our applications business. In the case of Office and Messenger we have great Macintosh experiences of both of those things.
"I think moving forward we're going to look at the Mac like any other platform and just say where is the demand for customers to go and use and consume our services, and where is there an opportunity for us to do work.
"So, certainly that starts with just really doing great support for Safari as a browser, and for Firefox on the Mac as a browser for people who use those, continuing to have a great experience in Messenger, and then evaluating over time what sets of features that we should add to either our Office applications or to new experiences on the Mac.
"We think the Mac is a great platform, and we're just going to try to figure out the right balance of investment to put on that platform. I think you have to more go scenario by scenario. So, experience by experience there will be a question of is a browser-based solution enough, should we hook in with an existing application, or do we put new software on the Macintosh. I think there is no blanket statement I can make about the Mac, except to say we think the Macintosh is a great platform, and we think that customers should be able to get to their Windows Live stuff on the Mac, and we'll continue to evaluate ways to do that."