Gates: Internet will be more useful than phones
April 16, 1999
by Kathleen Ohlson
(IDG) -- With little reference to the ongoing federal antitrust trial against his company, Microsoft Corp. Chairman Bill Gates discussed the future of software to an almost packed house at MIT's Laboratory of Computer Science as part of the lab's 35th anniversary celebrations.
"Software advances will be the key in building tools that will change how business, entertainment and learning will be done," Gates said. Software is defining how companies talk to consumers, such as remembering what shoppers bought during their last visit to a site, Gates said. CEOs are now joining chief information officers looking at the competition's software in order to compete, he added.
Although it's still in its early stage, the Internet has a "massive growth potential," enabling it to be increasingly relevant and cheaper to users, Gates said. The Internet will become a large force in the way businesses go about their day, and within five years, most jobs will use the Internet more than telephones, Gates said.
As for the antitrust trial and the potential results, Microsoft "supports the Internet in Windows" and the ability to have the "freedom to integrate and continue to have products with integrity," Gates said later during a press briefing.
Gates and his charitable foundation donated $20 million to build the new home of the MIT Laboratory for Computer Science. It will be ready by 2003 and named the William H. Gates Building.
Gates donates $20 million to MIT computer lab
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