Mojave experiment gets a Web site

Microsoft has created a teaser site for its Mojave project, in which it showed Vista to XP users, pretending it was a new version of Windows to see if they liked it.

Ina Fried Former Staff writer, CNET News
During her years at CNET News, Ina Fried changed beats several times, changed genders once, and covered both of the Pirates of Silicon Valley.
Ina Fried
2 min read
Microsoft has created a teaser site for its Mojave project. CNET News

REDMOND, Wash.--Evidently spurred on by the reception it got at Thursday's financial analysts meeting, Microsoft has decided to move ahead with plans to turn the Mojave project into a full-fledged Windows Vista marketing effort.

As first reported by CNET News, Microsoft last week interviewed XP users who were skeptical of Vista and showed them what it called a secret new version of Windows, "Mojave." It was in fact Vista. The results, according to Microsoft executives, were almost universally positive, with participants expressing surprise when told it was actually Vista they had been using.

For now, Microsoft has put up a teaser site, with plans to show the actual video footage next week. (As I mentioned before, Mojave was something put together in the past couple of weeks by internal Microsoft people and is not the larger advertising campaign coming from new ad agency Crispin Porter and Bogusky.)

Although the video was compelling and entertaining, at least some of the people I talked to who saw the video at Thursday's analyst meeting also stressed that early demos of Vista also looked good. The video, necessarily, doesn't show what it is like to, say, install software or hook Vista up to a home network. My guess is the participants didn't have to endure frequent User Account Control notifications either.

Still, it represents a more aggressive Microsoft that wants to go on the offensive with its Vista marketing. Earlier on Friday, Microsoft's Windows Vista Team Blog got unusually combative over this week's Forrester study that was critical of Vista's adoption among large businesses.

"Forrester Gets Schizophrenic on Windows Vista," read the headline of the posting from Windows team member Chris Flores.