'Guts' needed to abandon Microsoft

Any telco that shuts Microsoft out would be pretty "gutsy", says Telstra chairman Bob Mansfield.

Any telco that shuts Microsoft out would be pretty “gutsy”, says Telstra chairman Bob Mansfield.

Mansfield, in New Zealand late last month, pours scorn on the notion that the real reason for Microsoft boss Steve Ballmer’s recent visit to Sydney was to shore up support for Microsoft in the face of moves by Telstra towards Sun and Linux.

“I met with Steve — we have a range of business interests with Microsoft and we reviewed them. Microsoft is an important supplier for us and we’re an important cus-tomer.”

In July, Telstra announced a major deal under which Sun will supply hardware and software for a new services and data network, to be based on Java, SunONE and Sun’s J2EE web services platform.

Whether Telstra is moving towards Linux is unclear, but precedents are there in the form of Air New Zealand and a few Australian companies.

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