Gates spending 80 pct of R&D on .NET

Microsoft Corp's chairman Bill Gates said on Sunday the software giant was spending around 80 percent of its annual US$4 billion research and development (R&D) budget on work linked to its .NET internet integration strategy.

I'd say about 80 percent of it is behind this .NET effort. We actually started our advanced research group about eight years ago, and it's through .NET that their research will actually get into the market place,'' Gates told Australia's Nine Network Business Sunday programme.

The .NET strategy is intended to integrate Microsoft's software with the Internet and make it easier to swap information between computing devices.

The pay-off comes when it's actually shipped in the products and the first .NET products roll-out next year. The really profound ones are in the next two years,'' Gates said.

He added that Microsoft was currently in talks with media mogul Rupert Murdoch and also said Microsoft's Ninemsn Australian joint venture with Kerry Packer's Publishing and Broadcasting Ltd (Australia:PBL.AX - news) was performing well.

We have some very exciting conversations going on with people like DirecTV in the U.S. and all of Rupert's Sky-based efforts in other locations, Star, BSkyB, about what our technology could bring there,'' Gates said.

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