Story 2014-07-30 3S1 Nadella steering Microsoft back towards software for economic reasons

Nadella steering Microsoft back towards software for economic reasons

in microsoft on (#3S1)
Microsoft sold more physical devices than Apple did last year - due largely to its purchase of Nokia - and still managed to lose $700M last quarter. No wonder Nadella is steering Microsoft away from hardware and turning his back on Ballmer's mantra of "devices and services."
Microsoft’s quarterly financials are out, and they paint a startlingly clear picture of why new CEO Satya Nadella is in such a hurry to scuttle away from the “devices and services” mantra rolled out by former honcho Steve Ballmer just last year: Microsoft’s hardware efforts just aren’t making much money. In fact, they’re actually losing money hand over fist.
Reply 17 comments

For economic reasons (Score: 1)

by on 2014-07-30 03:02 (#2PZ)

Isn't that the point of a business as a profit-seeking venture?

Like him (Score: 1)

by on 2014-07-30 10:23 (#2Q0)

I haven't really been a MS fan for quite sometime, but I like this guy. In my opinion he's making all the right choices, stick with what you do best rather than branch out and neglect your best qualities. The surface and trying to turn windows into a toy mobile OS was a huge mistake. Get rid of the Metro interface and get it back to productivity focused rather than focused on entertainment and turning office workers into advertising targets. My office pays huge gobs of money every year for MS support ON DESKTOPS we don't need a tablet OS crammed down our throats making everyone less productive.

Here's hoping Windows 9 is better. Our higher-ups have said we will not be using windows 8 and are already starting to let people in my office switch to Linux, which is great for me and my team. But, I'm not looking forward to having to running around the building explain to people, that only know how download software from unknown sources on the web and click an icon on the desktop, why the IAmAVirus.exe they just got doesn't work on their stupid box.

Re: Like him (Score: 2, Insightful)

by on 2014-07-30 11:11 (#2Q1)

Ya, perhaps he will be able to turn the company around. I think the whole phone/tablet/mobile OS was a waste and unwelcome effort as well. They seriously just need to focus on their desktop, and fix it's many problems and security holes. If they slimmed that down and secured it well, they would have a real gem to work with. I hate to admit this because I run Linux on everything I use except my desktop at work as I have no choice, but Microsoft does hold the largest share when it comes to what OSs people run. The only thing I can't do on my Linux boxes is run some of my Bluray movies. For an OS that is completely free, Linux has come a long way. Microsoft needs to get its act together, or the majority will leave like I have.

Re: Like him (Score: 0)

by Anonymous Coward on 2014-07-30 16:29 (#2Q8)

Microsoft just got seriously butthurt by the fact that they put out smartphones a year or two prior to Apple and fell on their face due to pressures from the carriers (pressures Apple carefully avoided by being willing to walk away from the table having seen the road taken by Microsoft). The last few years of "We swear we can make phones/tablets" has been little more than a juvenile temper tantrum with a price tag of a few billion dollars.

I'm decidedly NOT a proponent of Microsoft and their historically locked down approach to software, but I'm still thrilled to see they're going to move back toward making productivity tools for people in offices. It's the only real area they've been able to truly dominate any and all competition, and frankly, when Linux takes over in cubicle land, I'd like to know it was due to certain hurdles being cleared, rather than that that big competitor completely imploded after hemmorhaging money left and right trying to compete with Apple in the toy industry.

While far too much of the popular media has begun looking at anything that sits plugged into a wall as a legacy system, Microsoft has been utterly foolish to eat it up. Just because housewives can do whatever they do on a computer on their tablet or smartphone doesn't mean the engineer in the cubicle can, and even if they CAN doesn't in any way mean it's remotely as efficient (hell, even laptops have enough drawbacks to ensure that we'll have desktops with us for some time coming).

I guess my point is, I like this guy. I'll like him even more if he steers Microsoft a bit more towards free software and open source in the future (and think that now more than ever would be a great time for it...and they ARE on github now). Even if not though, it's nice to see the enemy getting back on its feet. An epic battle for supremacy just wouldn't be any fun otherwise.

Re: Like him (Score: 1)

by on 2014-07-31 00:22 (#2QH)

I don't know about butthurt. Remember Microsoft was "technically" first with tablet computing too, but what they thought a tablet should be was a joke: a thick PIII laptop with a turn-around screen and some shitty software in addition to their usual office suite. Apple blew them out of the water by redefining what a tablet should be, and the market rushed to purchase it. Bill Gates' tablets - aimed for hospital workers, for example - were a lumbering pile of steaming fail by comparison.

I agree I mostly agree with the choices Nadella is making. Microsoft is floundering and needs a serious dose of visionary leadership, plus potentially the sacrificing of some of Microsoft's otherwise sacred cows - in order to stay viable. If they're unwilling to let him take out the axe and start swinging, then they are going to be irrelevant. By some accounts, they're already dangerously close to irrelevant in terms of hearts and minds of consumers. Win8 is horse dung – ask anybody who's used it.

Bluray on Linux (Score: 1, Informative)

by Anonymous Coward on 2014-07-31 01:22 (#2QK)

Steps to watch a Bluray on Linux:
  1. Install the Linux version of MakeMKV
  2. Put the bluray disk in the drive
  3. Press the Go button
  4. Open the resulting MKV video file in your favorite video player (VLC, mplayer, etc)
Honestly, it can't really get much easier than this.

Re: Bluray on Linux (Score: 1)

by on 2014-07-31 11:29 (#2QS)

I said SOME Blurays due to the copy protection employed, specifically BD+ discs I own. I was not aware, but it appears libbdplus has been released since December 2013. It looks like MakeMKV is also using BD+. I'm impressed.

Re: Like him (Score: 0)

by Anonymous Coward on 2014-07-30 16:22 (#2Q5)

Maybe. People and The Media don't pay nearly enough attention to the ongoing unequivocal failure of Windows 8, in every company everywhere (with more than 5 seats at any rate). It is shunned like a viral leper with bad breath and a knapsack full of sewage.

They (and Ballmer) have really gotten a pass on this abject failure. Vista, by comparison, made decent, if grudging inroads. For the record I'm not basing this on any particular data, only experience, so ignore my opinion as you may.

I think that if Red Hat, in particular, made more of an effort (hell, any kind of real effort) to have a saleable usable desktop version, they could get some serious desktop presence. 'Cause companies really like to pay for software, and Redhat's well known in their server rooms already.

Re: Like him (Score: 1)

by on 2014-07-31 11:45 (#2QT)

They could and I think they should offer a better desktop version for the masses, but CentOS (I'm not willing to pay for RHEL) works fine for me. I've used Fedora off and on over the years, but in my opinion it breaks too much.

Xbox is next? (Score: 2, Insightful)

by on 2014-07-30 15:57 (#2Q4)

I wonder what this means for the Xbox. They've never really made money on the thing and they've failed to make the Xbox One into the big multimedia entertainement device they wanted it to be. I don't think they'll can it (they have to recoup their losses after all), but this might be the last one.

Re: Xbox is next? (Score: 2, Funny)

by Anonymous Coward on 2014-07-30 16:23 (#2Q6)

Sell it to Nintendo?

Re: Xbox is next? (Score: 1)

by on 2014-07-31 09:32 (#2QN)

So Nintendo can kill it like they killed off the Wii?

Re: Xbox is next? (Score: 0)

by Anonymous Coward on 2014-07-31 10:48 (#2QQ)

They "killed it off" by releasing a pointless expensive confusing incompatible underpowered upgrade. Xbox is none of those things except expensive.

Re: Xbox is next? (Score: 0)

by Anonymous Coward on 2014-07-31 13:55 (#2QX)

That looks like an agreement that Nintendo could kill the Xbox if given the opportunity

Re: Xbox is next? (Score: 1)

by on 2014-07-31 15:03 (#2QZ)

Sell what to Nintendo? The people? Not gonna happen. Nintendo has their own developpment culture which doesn't mesh so well with american studios. The licenses? Meh. The only IP Microsoft owns is of little interest to Nintendo, considering the market they're going after. I guess they could sell patents for the Kinect, that's the only thing Nintendo might want.

Re: Xbox is next? (Score: 1)

by on 2014-07-30 21:15 (#2QA)

Often times it's better to junk something than to try to recoup losses:

The question is when to pull the plug and when to feed it more.

Re: Xbox is next? (Score: 0)

by Anonymous Coward on 2014-07-30 21:49 (#2QE)

I think the decision will come after the end of year sales numbers are in. This Christmas may determine the fate of the Xbox.