Tesco goes into the software business

Supermarket giant Tesco has announced it is planning to sell its own branded software through its stores. Tesco Software will be available in over 100 Tesco stores nationwide, with plans to roll out across the UK over the following 12 months.

Tesco goes into the software business

Technology and customer support will be provided via the TescoSoftware.com website.

Tesco intends to roll out the service with six titles – an office suite, two security / antivirus products, a personal finance tool, a CD/DVD burning tool and a photo editing tool all at around twenty pounds each. The software has been developed by a company named Formjet based in Cambridge, which is behind Ability Software and other applications.

Ability claims a ‘high degree of file compatibility’ with Microsoft Office. It also includes a PDF Creator that enables users to create email-friendly PDF files in any of its five applications including Write, Spreadsheet, Database, Photopaint and Presentation. It also offers Titanium Anti-Virus and Internet Security.

Tesco, now having the lion’s share of the groceries market has been expanding into other areas such as clothes, mobile phones, insurance and other services at the checkout.

In March of this year, Tesco also announced it would begin selling Apple kit in 300 stores across the UK, using the same branding and point-of-sale display material that Apple uses in its own retail stores. This followed a successful trial in Milton Keynes.

While Microsoft will probably not fear for the sales of Office 2007, Tesco branded software may prove attractive to consumers looking for anti-virus and firewall protection and could put a dent in the mainstream security vendors such as Symantec and McAfee.

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