11:36 AM

Vista's First Launch Expected In Canada

Microsoft expects to launch Vista in Edmonton in November, with other Canadian cities to follow.

Microsoft's Canadian operation will apparently lead the way in rolling out the software giant's new operating system, with a Vista launch scheduled for on Nov. 23 in Edmonton and later events to take place in other Canadian cities.

Microsoft's Canadian operation leaked Vista pricing information on its Web site briefly last summer, before removing the data.

In its promotional material for the Canadian events, Microsoft plans sessions for partners and developers. "Learn how to create double-digit growth," states Microsoft Canada's Vista promotion for developers. "You'll learn insights into steady double-digit growth as a management discipline that can be developed by any management team."

After the initial event in Edmonton, the launches are expected to continue throughout December in other Canadian cities including Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa, Winnipeg, Calgary, Vancouver, and Victoria. Microsoft has scheduled additional launches in January for other Canadian cities.

Jupiter Research senior analyst Joe Wilcox said Microsoft will be particularly aggressive in pushing Vista in the coming months. "I expect to see some hard sell by Microsoft," said Wilcox. "Microsoft missed the big refresh buying cycle of the last two years when business customers were buying a lot of PCs."

Microsoft will have to engage in heavy evangelizing to convince enterprise customers to upgrade immediately, Wilcox said.

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