Microsoft have lots of problems. Whilst there’s no doubt it is still a dominant force, I think it would be hard to argue that its future is going to be anything other than a shadow of its past. This article looks at the financial performance in more detail:
Over the last decade, Wall Street has declined to reward Microsoft for its superior profit. The explanation is simple: Professional investors don’t believe Ballmer, and they don’t see bigger profits in Microsoft’s future. Conversely, they bid up Apple’s shares precisely because they think the company will keep growing revenue and profits. Apple has managed to enter new, growing markets, a feat Ballmer has repeatedly failed to accomplish.
Of course Apple could be in the same situation except for one thing:
Microsoft didn’t have Apple’s stroke of luck. Fire one if its founders who goes on to start two companies, Pixar and NeXT, and then comes back twelve years later, tempered by the experiences, good and bad, ready to lead the company to an amazingly successful second act. Except for Ballmer’s two-year stint at Procter & Gamble, all he and Gates have ever known is Microsoft.
Interesting perspective. It is interesting how irrelevant Microsoft are becoming to daily life. Of course they are still dominant in Enterprise IT, but at work we’re increasingly seeing either their IT folk being much more open to the rest of the IT world, or we’re seeing the business bypassing their IT dept. entirely and going for Cloud-based solutions.