Speculation among security industry sources suggests that Microsoft may be preparing to introduce its standalone antivirus software next week.
Industry watchers said Thursday that the software giant very well could take the wraps off its emerging security product plans in a scheduled announcement on Monday, although the sources indicated their belief that the applications themselves may not reach the market for several more months. Microsoft representatives did not immediately return calls seeking comment on the rumor.
At least one security expert said that Microsoft is readying a shrink-wrapped antivirus package that it will offer through retail channels for "significantly less" than $25. Based on the level of sophistication of the product, or whether it includes tools for fighting different types of malicious programs--including spam and adware--the Microsoft offering could undercut pricing of similar products sold by security specialists such as Symantec and McAfee.
Researchers at Gartner estimate that only 13 percent of consumer-operated desktop computers connected to the Internet have third-party antivirus tools. By offering low-cost security applications branded to sell alongside its dominant Windows operating system and Office desktop software, experts have said that Microsoft could persuade many people who have yet to buy antivirus products to fork over their money. Continue At Source