Scanning the headlines after U.S. Judge Marsha Pechman unsealed internal Microsoft e-mails in the Vista Capable class-action suit would lead you to believe that Intel was the main force behind the botched marketing campaign. "Intel pressured Microsoft" is the main thrust of much of the reporting on the eye-opening Vista Capable e-mail exchanges between Microsoft executives, including CEO Steve Ballmer.
But if we learn anything from slogging through the 158 pages of electronic discovery, it's that Best Buy, not Intel, was apparently a prime driver of Microsoft's decision to stamp many more computers with the Vista brand than it had originally planned.
And really, how much of this can honestly be laid at the feet of the Santa Clara, Calif.-based chip giant? Sure, Microsoft executives said things like, "We are caving to Intel," and "We are allowing Intel to milk [the] 915." And Microsoft's Will Poole, senior VP of Windows Client Business, does describe an alleged desire from Intel to loosen the WDDM graphics requirement for Vista Capable systems, in detailing his contacts with Intel counterpart Renee J. James, VP of the chip maker's Software and Solutions Group.
Microsoft, Intel, Windows Vista, Windows Vista Capable