In order to serve content on our website, we rely on advertising revenue which helps us to ensure that we continue to serve high quality unbiased journalism.
To know how to disable your Ad Blocker, please
Please refresh your page, once Ad Blocker is disabled
Software used to be a product on desktops. It is now increasingly a service you rent on the Internet – or the cloud.
Satya Nadella, Microsoft’s new Hyderabad-born CEO has to address this tectonic shift that takes away from his company’s PC era monopoly. His appointment brings back technology focus from the marketing-oriented Steve Ballmer, who led the company for 13 years.
“I am glad they picked an engineer,” said a former high-level Microsoft executive, who asked not to be identified. “They badly need a good product.”
Revenues from the ubiquitous Windows platforms is down roughly 30% since 2010. The MS Office product is growing at stagnant rates. Giants like IBM and Amazon lead “cloud” services in which Microsoft is a latecomer. Google search is leap years ahead of Microsoft’s Bing.
A shaky marriage with Nokia to sell Windows mobile devices – up against Apple and Google Android-led Samsung, and a lacklustre start to Surface, its tablet PC, add to the woes. In gaming the Xbox is up against the mighty Sony.
Nadella, luckily for the company, has a solid grounding in cloud computing, which is where the future is. But he also has to think of various divisions. Tongues are wagging about a company break-up.
“He needs to start from scratch and think about what the company should be,” wrote Marc Andreessen, co-founder to the Netscape browser .
As Bob Darrow wrote on industry site GigaOm, “the company is trying to navigate a tricky transition from its client-server cash cows — Office and Windows — to a cloudier SaaS (software as a service) model.”
It might help Nadella that Microsoft is sitting on $83 billion (Rs 5.2 lakh crore) in cash.