Microsoft is changing the way it will distribute its personal finance software. The company plans to stop selling Money Plus in boxed form. Also there will be no release for the year 2009. The company feels there is no need for incremental improvements. In a blog statement the company also says the following:
Annual Release Change
- Microsoft Money Plus continues to be a valuable tool for our customers; however the feedback we are hearing is that the incremental updates to the software don’t merit a new product every year. Given this, we have decided against releasing a 2009 version of Money Plus.
- We are moving off of an annual release cycle for Microsoft Money Plus (no Money 2009 version in the fall), with future release dates TBD. Money Plus continues to be a valuable tool for our customers, however the feedback we are hearing loud and clear is that, after 17 years in the market, the incremental updates to the software don’t merit a new product release every year. Given this, we have decided against releasing a 2009 version of Money Plus.
100% Online distribution (out of the packaging business and physical retail store shelves)
- More and more retail consumers are going online to shop the endless rows of digital shelves. In response to our retail partners’ needs, consumer behavior and business efficiencies, Microsoft is focusing distribution efforts for Microsoft Money Plus software online via download and discontinuing traditional box sales of the software at retail.
- Microsoft Money Plus will continue to be available at retail outlets while supplies last. We have stopped shipping new product to retail outlets.
- We have been listening to our customers and analyzing market trends and business dynamics and feel that distribution the software product online will provide our customers with the right mix of products and services that will meet their needs.
The combination of Money Plus and MSN Money will continue to provide a comprehensive source for our customer’s money and personal finance needs. Through the various tools and tight integration with the site, Money Plus customers can get a complete view of their finances, understand what bills have been paid and which are due, access stock information and tap into the extensive list of financial experts on MSN Money for tips and guidance.
Microsoft also states that this in no way is an indication that the company is getting away from boxed distribution of its software. Instead it will distribute the software online. This comes as no real surprise since for years it haa been expected that retail boxed software was on its way out in favor of online distributions.
What do you think? Is this the start of online distribution of future software?