Microsoft along with other industry-leading companies announced a new partnership for American innovation. Apple, DuPont, Ford, GE, IBM, Microsoft and Pfizer is partnering with Former U.S. Patent Trademark Office (USPTO) Director David Kappos to highlight the value of intellectual property and patents to U.S. jobs and the economy. Read the full press release below. NEW YORK, April 3, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — A diverse group of industry-leading companies — Apple, DuPont, Ford, GE, IBM, Microsoft and Pfizer — which have staked their businesses on innovation, have launched the Partnership for American Innovation (PAI) to safeguard America’s position as a global innovation leader. Former U.S. Patent Trademark Office (USPTO) Director David Kappos, now a partner at Cravath, Swaine & Moore, is a senior advisor to the group. PAI members represent a diverse cross section of the economy; they have different business models, use their patent portfolios in very different ways, and are frequently ...

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Last week we reported about Bloomberg claiming that Ford is planning to switch from Windows to Blackberry’s QNX OS for their next-generation Sync system. The report said that Ford is expecting that the QNX based SYNC system will be less expensive than licensing Microsoft technology and will improve the flexibility and speed of the next Sync system. However, the real story seems to be different. Speaking to CNET at MWC, Ford managing director Pin van der Jagt revealed that Ford is always questioning and evaluating suppliers and in the same process they are re-evaluating the Microsoft deal as part of normal business. “Sync 1 and 2 was done with Microsoft but we are not married with them. For us, it’s a supplier, so every time we keep evaluating is it the right partner,” he said. This does not mean Microsoft is out and QNX is in. He commented the following ...

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Ford announced its car platform based on Windows Embedded few years back. Following Ford, many other automotive companies like Kia and others. Today, Bloomberg reported that Ford is planning to switch from Windows to Blackberry’s QNX OS for their next-generation Sync system. Ford is expecting that this QNX based SYNC system will be less expensive than licensing Microsoft technology and will improve the flexibility and speed of the next Sync system. Ford has more than 7 million vehicles on the road with Sync using Microsoft’s platform to make mobile phone calls and play music. The consumer satisfaction survey has revealed that Ford’s customers are not happy with progress with their touch screen technologies over the last few years. While Bloomberg is trying to portray that the problem with Microsoft’s platform is the reason for the downfall of SYNC platform, the actual reason is something different. A former SYNC engineer revealed the following, It’s ...

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In September we covered a report by Kara Swisher in which she got a statement out of Alan Mulally about becoming Microsoft’s next CEO: “I continue to be focused on serving Ford … and I have my red Ford vest on right now!!” Here is a report from this blog on October 3, 2013: Ford CEO Alan Mulally Sidesteps Questions About Becoming Microsoft’s Next CEO, in there Alan Mulally talks to USA Today and explicitly states: “I love serving Ford and have nothing new to add to (my) plans to continue serving Ford,” Alan Mulally Here is a statement from Ford yesterday, as they were surrounded by press because the company was unveiling the 2014 Mustang: This is completely consistent with what we’ve been publicly saying for the past 13 months,” said Jay Cooney, a Ford spokesman. “Alan Mulally’s plan is to stay on through the end of 2014.” Now ...

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Kara Swisher is reporting that Alan Mulally is currently the top pick to become Microsoft’s next CEO.  I have reached out myself to induviduals familiar with the situation who tell me that the board is no where near a final list of candidates and Mulally has indicated he is not interested in the job.  Now, Mrs. Swisher has significantly more credibility than I do, so you’ll have to independently come to your own conclusion here.  Considering Mulally is approaching the age of 70, I still have trouble believing he would become CEO since he would have to plan his own succession almost immediately.  Now, Ballmer and Mulally are friends and he has advised the Microsoft CEO in the past.  Certainly it is quite plausible that Mulally could be giving Microsoft some guidance on picking their next CEO. I will repost an editorial I wrote regarding Mr. Mulally some weeks back: ...

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Ford CEO Alan Mulally’s name continues to pop up as a possible replacement for retiring Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.  I like Mulally and there is certainly no arguing that Ford would have gone bankrupt without him.  However, I do not think he is the right person to replace Ballmer, but could be an asset to Microsoft in another capacity.  Making planes at Boeing and cars at Ford is quite different from running a premiere technology company. We recently covered a report, in which investors have been pressuring Microsoft to name Mulally as CEO.  Why would investors want Mulally as CEO? He isn’t from Google, Apple, Amazon, Twitter or some other hot silicon valley startup.  He isn’t fawned upon by the Technorati (excluding the times he does large ad buys on their “respective” websites).  Mulally isn’t young or hip.  He isn’t a rich socialite or fashionista akin to Marissa Mayer.  He isn’t a bully like Steve Jobs.  He ...

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Ford CEO Alan Mulally’s name comes up often as a possible replacement for retiring Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.  On the surface it seems like a good idea.  Mulally has an engineering background and revamped Boeing and Ford.  Mulally and Ballmer are friends, especially given both their connections to Detroit.  In 2009 Ballmer wrote the introduction for Mulally when he was named in Time magazine’s top 100 people.  While I do not want to get into a lengthy discussion of why I do not think Mulally is right for Microsoft as CEO, consider the fact that he is 68 years and was set to retire from Ford at the end of 2014.  I do think Mulally would be able to provide great insights for Microsoft and might be a great board member. The Ford board has warmed up to Mark Fields, their current COO, as a natural successor to Mulally and are now comfortable ...

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Ford has announced their new 2014 Ford Fiesta will come equipped with Microsoft’s latest version of their Sync software, which features more natural and accurate voice recognition, simpler Bluetooth® phone pairing and better navigation controls. The software will be ensconced in the  MyFord Touch® with a new 6.5-inch LCD touch screen. More than 5 million cars and trucks have been sold with the system which first launched SYNC on the 2008 Focus, then its smallest and most affordable car. Now, unveiling MyFord Touch for Fiesta cements Ford’s commitment to making technology affordable and accessible to everyone. "Technology features are important to all of our customers including small car buyers, and MyFord Touch continues to drive up purchase consideration of our vehicles," says Michelle Moody, Ford cross-vehicle marketing manager. "MyFord Touch is appealing to customers, as it consistently ranks among the top 10 purchase considerations with new owners. We’re excited to ...

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Ford introduced SYNC, connectivity technology built on the Windows Embedded Automotive platform to deliver rich, interactive experiences for drivers of their vehicles three years ago. At CeBIT today, Ford announced that from next year, European drivers will be able to benefit from a smarter, intuitive and simplified way of interacting with in-car technologies and their digital devices. The system will debut in the new Ford Focus next year. At US alone, SYNC is in more than 3 million vehicles. SYNC is now available in US for the Ford vehicles such as Chassis Cab, Flex, Edge, Focus Sedan, Escape, Fusion, E-Series Wagon, Mustang. Current SYNC Features Include: Hands-free Calling Turn-by-Turn Directions 911 Assist™ Music Search Vehicle Health Report Personalized Daily Info Business Search Traffic Alerts Audible Text Messages Ford CEO, Alan Mulally on SYNC, “We are pleased to announce that SYNC will soon be available to customers around the world,” . ...

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