HP Deal Embeds Sliverlight Trojan Horse

Everyone's abuzz about HP's decision to ship Microsoft's Live Search toolbar beginning with 2009 HP computers. But this is more than just a win for Microsoft Live Search. It's just as big of a win for Silverlight, Microsoft's contender to take on Adobe and remake how web applications interact with users. The HP agreement is the largest and first deal I'm aware of to distribute any application written in Silverlight.

Sliverlight brings some new opportunities for browser tool bars we haven't seen to date. Sliverlight is much more interactive and highly animated. Sliverlight is also easier to upgrade and extend with new code. As Microsoft builds more web 2.0-like applications, integrate them on the Windows Vista and Windows 7 platform of the future, the Sliverlight-based toolbar could become the same search capabilities built into other applications. That's not something Google has been able to pull off; getting Google search easily built into other applications.

The more Sliverlight hooks for key functions Microsoft gets out there, the better. Microsoft has the advantage of being able to integrate these with their own applications. The same search used in Internet Explorer could be the same underlying plugin used within photo gallery, Live Workspace or other Microsoft web 2.0 apps.

The more avenues to get Siliverlight apps. on customers' machines, the better for its viability and ability to compete with Adobe Flash. The HP deal represents a small but important step for making that happen. Congratz to Live Search, and just as a big a congratz to Silverlight.

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