Earlier this week Microsoft announced plans for their upcoming subscription service intended to squash viruses, spyware and more. As I mentioned in a previous post, I’m highly likely to stick with my Symantec subscription. Microsoft makes great products, but I can’t bring myself to spend money fixing holes they have in their operating system. When a car manufacturer has a serious product flaw you bring the car back in via a recall and they fix it for free. When software companies run into the same problem, they generally issue free patches/updates, which Microsoft also does, of course; but when they add to it with a fee-based subscription service, I’ve really got to say “no thanks”.
Microsoft is an easy target and I’m obviously not alone in this bias against the OneCare concept. David Pogue also recently commented on this one. He says much the same as what I’ve noted above, but also adds that there might be an anti-competition issue here as well. Perhaps, but I figure Microsoft’s program will just force Symantec to make their product that much better, which means I still come out ahead. Yes, I know OneCare could crush antivirus companies much like IE killed Netscape, Word killed WordPerfect, Excel killed 1-2-3, etc. I tend to believe this war is different since so many customers seem to question whether Microsoft (a) can really create a competitive product and (b) is worthy of a subscription payment when they really ought to just fix the problems for free.
What’s your opinion?