Microsoft, Google Planning Promotional Visits to Grounds in September

September 08, 2008

Sept. 5, 2008 — The technological turf war between Microsoft and Google is coming to the University of Virginia.

On Tuesday, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Microsoft will bring its "Great TechXploration" tour to the second floor of Newcomb Hall. According to a press release, the nationwide campaign focuses on "educating students on the latest and greatest tips and techniques for sharing, enjoying and maximizing their digital media."

The visit will feature hands-on demonstrations of Microsoft products, including Zune, Xbox, Office Live Workspaces and the Live@edu suite of applications for college students.

Of greater appeal to students may be the giveaways. In the "Digital Dorm Room Sweepstakes," Microsoft will retrofit the rooms of three lucky students with $5,000 worth of "media center hardware and goodies." Microsoft representatives will also award Xbox games, TV Tuner bundles and canvas bags to winners of a "Guitar Hero III 'Rock Off' Tournament" and a cash-cube grab.

Coming later this month: the Google Bus is scheduled to make a stop Sept. 24 on the Newcomb Plaza.

Earlier this year, the University announced it would outsource its student e-mail functions, giving students the option of choosing application suites from either Microsoft or Google – or both. Students had until August to choose one vendor to migrate their e-mail archives to, and the migration process is under way, officials with the Office of Information Technology and Communications said.