Synonymous with Kleenex, Apple, Google and Amazon have become household names, and it has only taken a decade for them to do so.
Apple’s rebirth via iPod, iPhone and iPad have forced the entire technology industry to follow their lead. Google’s search prowess has taken them well beyond anything they thought possible in just a few short years ago, and Amazon’s reach has moved from online retailer to hardware and content provider.
Where has Microsoft been during this past decade of massive transformation?
Lost for a plethora of reasons, but chief among them is the company’s willful notion that it can enter a market late, push software licensing, and dominate by bullying distribution, out-marketing and out-advertising all competitors.
The Microsoft formula for success continues to be dead wrong.
For starters, Microsoft continues to act as if it has limited competition with talent-starved engineering lacking ideas, with empty wallets. Fact is, Microsoft is facing dozens of fronts that have highly skilled teams executing their plans to perfection. Apple has created and re-invented massive technology categories forcing Microsoft to play in their sandbox. Amazon, Google, Samsung, FaceBook, Twitter, Sony, and the list goes on and on. Microsoft is getting battered by a bunch of grown men with big sticks and it isn’t going to stop any time soon.
For Microsoft the 80's and 90's were simpler times. Someone gets a Windows PC at work so then they buy one for home. People were just getting into technology beyond the workplace, and purchasing something they were comfortable with was an easy decision for consumers. It was either a Windows PC or a costly Macintosh that did not present a great value proposition. The past decades of tech were simple, and it was easy pickings for Gates and Company.
Microsoft is still operating under the same ideals of decades past. The cultural arrogance still permeates Redmond’s halls. The premise that they can simply force their way into markets (usually years late) is stunning arrogance on parade. Cash allows Microsoft to stick around for at least another decade, but at some point, expect a future CEO to split the company, selling off divisions that have no chance of survival (or resurrection) in order to stay alive — and focused.
Like a horde of the living dead waiting to be put out of their misery, Windows desktop is over. Microsoft is best suited to rid themselves of the Windows 8 platform, allowing it to wither and die without artificial corporate life support. The consumer properties, such as xBOX, will likely also be spun off with the opportunity to thrive, free to weave its own path. Windows Server and Office solutions will become Microsoft's core offerings. This is the one area where Google, Apple and Amazon are not destroying Microsoft a product at a time.
Server solutions and Office, free from the pernicious motives of Microsoft’s corporate Windows desktop/office failed monopoly game, can explore and expand to any platform it chooses. Windows Server and Exchange will be able to also expand their capabilities within the IT realm, as they are doing today.
Microsoft is likely to be removed from the world of the consumer or business user, relegated to fight within the back office realm of Oracle and IBM. And all of this is due to Apple, Google and Amazon having their way with Microsoft, a company that continues to live in a world of arrogant denial.
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