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CRN: What are you doing to prepare partners to sell Windows 8? And how can partners make money?
Roskill: Windows is one of the most distributed products in the world. Do some people treat it as a loss-leader? Sure. Are some people building very healthy businesses on top of it? Absolutely. And, that's something that each of these VARs has to make a decision around their own business model.
I'll guarantee the percentage that is reselling SA is quite low. So, I would encourage them to look for other opportunities, and look at things like Windows Intune, and think about adding other value on top of that stack.
Windows 8 is a monumental release for us. That's what we're shooting for on this one, and there shouldn't be any question about that. We're investing big-time in the channel behind that. We're firing on all cylinders across the company, and it starts with the developer evangelization group. They're going after the top applications in the world while making sure they are ready for Windows 8. And, most of those applications run on Windows 7 today and so the discussion is about the Metro UI.
We're working not just with the packaged applications, but, interestingly, with a lot of the big businesses that make applications that go to consumer devices. So it could be your bank, for example, or your insurance company.
We're spending billions, from what we're spending with the OEMs, to what we're spending with the resellers, what we're spending with application developers, in terms of the overall go-to-market. It's absolutely in the billions.
So it's going to be a big, big release. There's going to be lots of Windows 8 at WPC. So partners should come expecting that. In a lot of ways it's going to be a kickoff for them in terms of building out their [Windows 8] business.
The second [WPC] piece is going to be around the cloud offerings. You're going to hear a lot about the next versions of our cloud offerings. WPC is the place where our best partners come to have business discussions and learn how to build their businesses to the next level. And, we'll be announcing new programs around the products, the cloud products, and new rate tables and the next revs of what we're doing.
We've changed a lot in the last two years with the competency models and the new incentive programs we've got out there. That's what we want to leverage going into this WPC.
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