News Analysis: Microsoft has had an up and down kind of year. The company released Windows 7, but it also was forced to lay off 5,000 employees. While it introduced new security products, it's still fighting an uphill battle against security vulnerabilities. It jump-started its online efforts, but failed to improve Windows Mobile. We take a look at those things the company did wrong in 2009.
Although Microsoft did some things right in 2009, the software giant
also made some mistakes. The year was a story of ups and downs for
Microsoft. It did a great job with Windows 7
but the OS still suffered from security issues. Microsoft launched Bing
to much fanfare in 2009, but it still couldn't capture significant
market share to take on Google.
Unfortunately, that has been the story for Microsoft as of late.
Although 2009 did see some good things come out of the company's
strategy, it couldn't overcome the same troubles that have continued to
As we look ahead to 2010 and the issues it will undoubtedly face,
there's no guarantee that the software giant will be able to overcome
them. It's facing more pressure from Google, more criticism from Apple,
and more anger from the European Union. Whether or not it will confront
those problems more effectively than it did in 2009 is a question mark
at this point.
But for now, we must take a look back at 2009 to see what Microsoft did wrong during the past year.
1. Not stopping Apple's onslaught
Over the past few years, Apple's "I'm a Mac, I'm a PC" ads have been extremely successful
They helped Apple gain notoriety in the mainstream, while damaging
Windows' reputation. For its part, Microsoft did try to combat those
ads with some commercials of its own in 2009, but for the most part,
they fell flat. Apple's ads still reign supreme. And it doesn't look
like that will be changing anytime soon.
2. Getting caught up in Google
Microsoft is obsessed with Google. Rather than focusing on its key
products-Windows and Office-Microsoft decided to take on Google however
it could. Granted, the Web is the future and Microsoft needs to play a
major role in that, but competing with Google negatively affected other
services, like Windows Mobile, that were in desperate need of attention
in 2009. Microsoft can't obsess over Google in 2010.
3. The multi-version fiasco
Microsoft had an opportunity with Windows 7 to totally eliminate the
issues users had with Windows Vista. On the software side, it did a
good job. But from a marketing perspective, it committed the same
mistake of offering multiple versions of the operating system. By doing
so, Microsoft only confused customers, making them wonder which
operating system would suit their needs. One Windows version is enough.
4. Starter edition
One of Microsoft's biggest blunders during 2009 was offering Windows 7 Starter edition
Users looking to buy netbooks with the new and improved Windows 7 were
in for a rude awakening when they found out that several features in
the standard version of the operating system weren't available in
Starter edition. Microsoft needs to spend time in 2010 optimizing the
standard Windows 7 version to work with netbooks.