SPOTLIGHT: Microsoft bid to create new alliances

The biggest tech deal since the AT&T/SBC merger has sent shock waves through the tech and equity markets with lots of insightful--and some not so insightful observations--about what it all means. One more observation: the merger brings together Microsoft's half a billion global users and Yahoo's not quite half a billion global users. What that number becomes when the overlap is taken out is not known. But it will be significantly bigger than Google's global 550 million person audience and probably at least three times as many visitors as the number three global Internet firm Time Warner.

The emergence of two global titans will create two competing ecosystems/camps around which most other players will have to make a choice. Apple for example in that scenario ends up in the Google camp. Linux ditto? And where does that leave carriers desperately trying to avoid being providers of dumb pipes in the new order? AT&T is one of only a few companies with the financial and strategic capacity to also bid for Yahoo. To read the letter Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer sent Yahoo last night go here.