News Analysis: Microsoft can reverse its recent string of misfortune and become a far more competitive company in today's tech industry.
finds itself in an interesting position. On one hand, the software giant is
still a dominant force in the technology industry, generating billions of
dollars every quarter, thanks to its many product efforts around the world. On
the other hand, it has witnessed its importance in the space decline over the
past few years as Google, Apple and other competitors have made it look
outdated and confused.
Microsoft is far behind online. The company's browser, Internet Explorer, is
losing market share to Firefox and Google Chrome. Its mobile platform, Windows
Phone 7, is having a hard time gaining market traction in the face of immense
competitive pressure from Android and iOS. Simply put, things aren't
necessarily looking up for Redmond.
that doesn't mean that Microsoft can't change its luck. The company is
undoubtedly facing adversity that it won't easily overcome. But it's also
Microsoft, and it has the ability to stage a comeback, just as Apple did years
ago, that could see it return to its former position as the leader in the
on to find out how:
It has the cash to do it
face it: the technology industry is governed by cash. The more money a company
has to invest in a technology, the more likely it will find a way to make it
work more effectively than the competition's offering. Luckily for Microsoft,
it has all the cash it needs to succeed. If it wants to see a return to its former
glory, the company must find a way to put that cash to good use.
Steve Ballmer isn't hopeless
Steve Ballmer might not be the best CEO in the technology space
but he does understand what it takes to be successful in the software market.
At least right now, software is still integral to Microsoft's operation.
Realizing that, and considering Ballmer has shown some indication over the past
year that he's willing to look beyond just desktop software by doubling down on
consumer products and cloud integration with products such as Office 365,
Microsoft's CEO just might have what it takes to lead the company back to the
Windows is still tops
Microsoft is defined by anything, it's Windows. The company's operating system
is running on computers across the world, and it enjoys a dominant place in
that market. Going forward, Microsoft can rely upon Windows to help reverse its
declining position. In fact, Microsoft announced last year that it sold 240
million Windows 7 licenses, making it the fastest-selling version of Windows
ever. That doesn't sound like a company that's ready to wave the white flag.
And it has Windows to thank for it.
Internet Explorer is hanging on
Explorer is having some trouble competing in the browser space against Mozilla's Firefox and Google's Chrome
In fact, a recent study by StatCounter claims Internet Explorer was overtaken
by Firefox in Europe in overall market share. But perhaps it's not time to
count out Internet Explorer just yet. The browser is still used quite heavily
in the enterprise and across the United States. Microsoft can build upon that
and with some tweaks in speed and security, it might be able to regain lost
share. Internet Explorer 9 might be the browser version Microsoft needs to
regain lost market share.