Commentary

Microsoft Finally Making Mobile Run

For reasons that remains mostly unknown (Ballmer’s braggadocio? Strategic shortsightedness born from bureaucracy?) Microsoft was extremely late to the mobile party. As a result, the mobile operating ecosystem is still dominated by Google’s Android and Apple.

Yet, under the stewardship of CEO Satya Nadella, the company that Bill Gates built is finally showing signs of mobile life.

There are now 110 million devices running Windows 10 designed to run seamlessly across platforms, Microsoft said Tuesday during its Windows 10 hardware event.

In part, the success of Windows 10 -- which has only been on the market for about 10 weeks -- can be attributed to Microsoft’s decision to make it a free upgrade for Windows 7 and 8 users. As a result, the company recorded roughly 75 million installs about a month after its launch.

Likely to accelerate that growth, Microsoft said new apps for Windows 10 will include universal apps for Facebook, Instagram, and Facebook’s popular Messenger service.

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The deal is part of Microsoft’s broader efforts to encourage Windows 10 developers to create universal apps that span channels. It’s hardly the first time Microsoft and Facebook are working together, but the commitment shows that the social giant has faith in Microsoft’s mobile future.

And it should. Despite years of neglect and false starts, Microsoft certainly has the resources to redirect its massive operation squarely at mobile. As these latest figures suggest, the software giant is already well on its way.

This column was previously published in Moblog on October 6, 2015.

1 comment about "Microsoft Finally Making Mobile Run".
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  1. Michael Oddi from Tango Partners, October 8, 2015 at 3:02 p.m.

    I think Microsoft and Apple should focus on improving the quality of their software upgrades.  With so many bugs, Apple Music is a complete failure and iOS 9 has become too complex.  The beauty of Apple was ease of use and simplicity and Jobs was a stickler for this. His mission and vision has been corrupted by a new management team that is more focused on cool products and marketing than reliable functionality.  Likewise, Microsoft's recent Office 365 for Mac is hailed by Microsoft as a suite of products that works across all devices. Unfortunatly, the individual apps are full of bugs.  For example, Excel will not let you click on individual spreadsheet cells to create a formula.  When products don't perform their basic functions and are full of bugs, consumers stop upgrading and cross-device functionality doesn't really matter.  Both of these companies need to refocus their efforts on making quality their #1 business goal.  A cool device with poor software execution doesn't   cut it.

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