The very second I heard that OnLive was putting Windows and Office software on the iPad using its remote desktop platform, I knew Microsoft was going to have a major problem. That has turned out to be absolutely true with Microsoft and OnLive now in the middle of a dispute over licensing for the software allowed to run on the iPad.
Microsoft said, "We are actively engaged with OnLive with the hope of bringing them into a properly licensed scenario, and we are committed to seeing this issue is resolved."
It's not entirely clear, if Microsoft is simply hoping OnLive is in violation of licensing agreements, or if OnLive is in fact violating agreements. Microsoft makes a huge amount of money off Windows and its Office productivity suite. I am sure the company was to keep the profit for itself and OnLive offering access to the software is surely not sitting well.
ZDNet cites a Microsoft blog post today that read:
“ Customers that want to work with partners to have them host Windows 7 in a Virtual Desktop Infrastructure solution on their behalf, can do so when the customer provides the partner licenses through the customer’s own agreements with Microsoft. The hosting hardware must be dedicated to, and for the benefit of the customer, and may not be shared by or with any other customers of that partner.
“ Microsoft partners who host under the Services Provider License Agreement (“SPLA”) may bring some desktop-like functionality as a service by using Windows Server and Remote Desktop Services. Under this solution, the partner is free to offer this service to any customer they choose, whether or not they have a direct licensing agreement with Microsoft. However, it is important to note that SPLA does not support delivery of Windows 7 as a hosted client or provide the ability to access Office as a service through Windows 7. Office may only be provided as a service if it is hosted on Windows Server and Remote Desktop Services.”
I'm sure will see these two companies in court before long.