Sci/Tech Microsoft outlines pay-per-use PC vision

The Helper

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Microsoft has applied for a patent on metered, pay-as-you-go computing.

U.S. patent application number 20080319910, published on Christmas Day, details Microsoft's vision of a situation where a "standard model" of PC is given away or heavily subsidized by someone in the supply chain. The end user then pays to use the computer, with charges based on both the length of usage time and the performance levels utilized, along with a "one-time charge."

Microsoft notes in the application that the end user could end up paying more for the computer, compared with the one-off cost entailed in the existing PC business model, but argues the user would benefit by having a PC with an extended "useful life."

"A computer with scalable performance level components and selectable software and service options has a user interface that allows individual performance levels to be selected," reads the patent application's abstract. The patent application was filed June 21, 2007.

 
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seph ir oth

Mod'n Dat News Jon
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This makes macs look good. *sigh*
 

13lade619

is now a game developer :)
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The end user then pays to use the computer, with charges based on both the length of usage time and the performance levels utilized, along with a "one-time charge."
lol... so this then makes your home pc into a lifetime rental..?
and you're like living in an eternal computer rental shop. just lol.
 

w/e

Boaroceraptorasaurus-Rex
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This is just stupid. If this happens, I might be forced to switch to linux.
 

Darthfett

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Enjoy your AIDs.
And what exactly is that supposed to mean?

Anyways, I was reading some of the comments, and many were saying that this is like a cell phone plan. It's not.

For cell phone plans, you pay for texts, calls, downloading, and occasionally a few other features. Texts, calls, and downloads are all provided by the equivalent of your ISP for your computer. However, the cell phone itself is yours. You pay for it, and you can do as much as you want without the internet, such as listening to music, storing notes, using the calculator, and so on.

This plan is saying that even if you just want to type up documents, listen to your music library, organize your folders, etc, it's going to charge you money.
 

13lade619

is now a game developer :)
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This plan is saying that even if you just want to type up documents, listen to your music library, organize your folders, etc, it's going to charge you money.
yeah, plus all you also pay for the things you DO with the use of the computer..
like games, software, the internet, hardware and other stuff.
 

esb

Because none of us are as cruel as all of us.
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Wait... so this is worse than a cell phone plan? I have to pay not just for having the computer, but using it, and what I use in it? Damn... Now I won't want to go afk for a minute anymore. D=
What kind of BS is this... seriously. Money-thirsty much?
 

UndeadDragon

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If Microsoft do this, they can say bye to a lot of their users.
 

emjlr3

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you also pay for your "performance" - so if your just word processsing, you can pay less for less computing power - but if you are gaming, you'd pay more
 

Effane

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I dont see any good and marketable plan for this.

Likely it was just a move to do a couple things, they secured the technology to discourage this form of computing and they have in effect created something that will be unable to exactly duplicate.

I couldnt see myself renting my computer the rest of its lifespan. I always see some outright ownership of computers for the general population.

Here is a positive note, elderly, college students and such dont use much computing power on their machines. This could actually be very cheap for them as a solution to basic computing needs. I think the actual computer manufacturer though would lose out of this deal.
 

w/e

Boaroceraptorasaurus-Rex
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Microsoft must be out of their mind. No way they can pull this off.
 

enouwee

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Microsoft must be out of their mind. No way they can pull this off.
Why not? Nobody's forcing you to enter this kind of contract, you may opt not to use their operating system or software. The competition may choose a similar billing model, like a monthly subscription. If you're a World of Warcraft player, you already entered such an agreement. Why not for your whole computer?

The idea of paying by usage/time (aka. "on-demand") is nothing new and well known to enterprise customers through their big iron, where additional CPUs can be "unlocked" through software or billing occurs by actual or peak usage.

No need to buy additional software, like games. You get them for free, but pay only the time you spend using it. Of course only on your own computer, as your subscription ID prevents others from "borrowing" that copy. Try to mess with the system and it stops working: a true delight for software owners, as it instantly eliminates all kind of piracy. Or most of it if the hardware isn't dongled.

The end-users opinion doesn't matter much, as the large crowd doesn't know or care how a computer works, as long as it does it's job (i.e.: to surf the web or type some letters).

How could one convince the gaming community to support this model? Well: no online gaming without a valid subscription. No subscription without valid operating system subscription. Guaranteed income. Low piracy. Really tempting if you're doing this kind of development for a living.

Free and open source will will always be an alternative. But some things may not work or not as good as the "original". Once your bank requires a valid OS subscription for home banking, do you really have an alternative? What about your online shopping?

On one side you've got the customer, on the other the almighty buck and as long as the customer is ready to pay for such a service, the whole model will work. Given nowaday money clearly comes first and the industry has much to gain on subscriptions, the customer has no real choice but to accept. At least the Joe Sixpacks.

Didn't you already accept software activation? And DRM on your iPod?
 

w/e

Boaroceraptorasaurus-Rex
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Why not? Nobody's forcing you to enter this kind of contract, you may opt not to use their operating system or software. The competition may choose a similar billing model, like a monthly subscription. If you're a World of Warcraft player, you already entered such an agreement. Why not for your whole computer?

The idea of paying by usage/time (aka. "on-demand") is nothing new and well known to enterprise customers through their big iron, where additional CPUs can be "unlocked" through software or billing occurs by actual or peak usage.

No need to buy additional software, like games. You get them for free, but pay only the time you spend using it. Of course only on your own computer, as your subscription ID prevents others from "borrowing" that copy. Try to mess with the system and it stops working: a true delight for software owners, as it instantly eliminates all kind of piracy. Or most of it if the hardware isn't dongled.

The end-users opinion doesn't matter much, as the large crowd doesn't know or care how a computer works, as long as it does it's job (i.e.: to surf the web or type some letters).

How could one convince the gaming community to support this model? Well: no online gaming without a valid subscription. No subscription without valid operating system subscription. Guaranteed income. Low piracy. Really tempting if you're doing this kind of development for a living.

Free and open source will will always be an alternative. But some things may not work or not as good as the "original". Once your bank requires a valid OS subscription for home banking, do you really have an alternative? What about your online shopping?

On one side you've got the customer, on the other the almighty buck and as long as the customer is ready to pay for such a service, the whole model will work. Given nowaday money clearly comes first and the industry has much to gain on subscriptions, the customer has no real choice but to accept. At least the Joe Sixpacks.

Didn't you already accept software activation? And DRM on your iPod?
First off, they can't do this because they would lose a ton of customers. I would switch to linux for sure. This isn't like a monthly subscription. This charges you by the amount of time you use the computer.

When the end user's opinions stop mattering, there will be no more end users. As for software activation, I use mostly open source software, and my iPod is free of any DRM.
 

Seb!

You can change this now in User CP.
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Can you really patent a billing system? The actual product (the computer) wouldn't change, would it?
 
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