Microsoft Still Holds the Trump Cards

By Don Reisinger  |  Posted 2010-01-04 Print this article Print

5. The Yahoo pact

Microsoft might not have gotten the deal that it wanted from Yahoo, but the deal it did get could significantly improve the company's chances of competing with Google online. For now, Bing is trailing woefully behind Google Search. It's unlikely that users will move in droves from Google to Bing. Microsoft knows that. And that's precisely why the Yahoo deal was so important. With Yahoo in its corner, Microsoft can now compete against the leader with far more market share. That doesn't necessarily mean that it can beat Google in 2010, but it does put Sergey and Larry on notice. It also makes advertisers think twice about only using Google's advertising platform.

6. The enterprise

Too often it seems that it's only Microsoft that sees the value of the corporate world. The company has made the enterprise a key factor in its success. All the while, its main competitors look to the consumer for cash and power. Expect Microsoft to stick with the business world in 2010. It might not be the popular decision, but it is an extremely profitable decision.

7. Lasting profitability

One of the main reasons why Microsoft will dominate 2010 is its ability to consistently generate huge profits. Unlike so many others in the space that rely upon new technologies and new initiatives to stay in the black, Microsoft has built a business that can thrive while it attempts to break into other areas of the market. Apple is taking a risk with the iSlate. Google's Nexus One could cause the search giant to lose support from other vendors in the Open Handset Alliance. All the while, Microsoft is sticking to its core businesses to deliver profits, while innovating elsewhere without worrying about the impact on its bottom line. That should only help its chances in the future.

8. The iSlate isn't revolutionary

The industry is buzzing over what Apple plans to do with the iSlate, but for now, a tablet device that allows users to access the Web, use applications and control the display with multitouch gestures just isn't all that revolutionary. Think about it: The iPhone has the multitouch functionality and the apps. Microsoft and others have already opened up the tablet business. It seems that Apple is coming out with a product that probably won't captivate the mainstream the way the iPod or the iPhone did. Realizing that, why should it receive all the attention in 2010?

9. The Nexus One is no iPhone killer

Folks who have gotten their hands on Google's Nexus One have already said the device, while nice, won't be able to supplant the iPhone as the leader in the mobile space. That shouldn't come as a surprise. In 2009 alone, there were countless devices released that some predicted would be iPhone killers. In the end, they fell in line behind Apple's product, quickly losing the limelight. The Nexus One is shaping up to be another in a long line of iPhone victims. It won't rule 2010.

10. The wake-up call

If nothing else, 2009 was a wake-up call for Microsoft. The company came into the year attempting to address issues it was facing online and with Vista. It left 2009 having addressed several of those problems, while dealing with many new issues. Regardless, it woke Microsoft up. For too long, the company was complacent; it was content to stick with what it knew. But that led to a significant decline in market value and a loss of its dominance in the industry. But 2010 looks to be a much different year for Microsoft. It knows what it needs to do. And by the looks of things, this could be its most formidable year yet.

Don Reisinger is a freelance technology columnist. He started writing about technology for Ziff-Davis' Since then, he has written extremely popular columns for, Computerworld, InformationWeek, and others. He has appeared numerous times on national television to share his expertise with viewers. You can follow his every move at

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