Can Microsoft still win on mobile?

The future of smartphones based on Windows 10 and Windows Phone is a rather obscurity colored. We talk about their hardware division, which has been providing news like last week in which layoffs predicted a road different from what many had wished for such devices route.

For some Microsoft is retiring to time a part of the business that fails to move forward, but obviously wish that Microsoft would not lose camber in an area in which still has much to say. It may not hardware, but software and services. That’s where Microsoft can win the battle in the mobile.

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Nadella is very clear

Microsoft CEO aclabara in its internal memorandum (but then was public) how the progress of mobile business has not been that many expected. This is likely to Satya Nadella will would find a good landmark when that endearing couple formed by Ballmer and Ellop reached an agreement that made no sense for Microsoft.

The restructuring of the division has been enormous: last year we saw how 7800 people “left” his position in that part of the business, and indeed the Nadella himself explained this change in philosophy for quite patent in that memo:

We are going to have a strategy in which the idea is the growth of an autonomous mobile business to another strategy in which the idea is the creation and growth of a vibrant ecosystem that includes Windows family of our own devices.

Or what is the same: the hardware- the mobile manufacturing, which suffered sales falls thundering recently- not be the pillar of its strategy. In Microsoft they have long migrated to different tactics that go far in the direction of “if you cannot beat them, join them”.

The hardware is not the key

Not that Windows 10 leaves the mobile. In fact, it is a perfect platform to mature in this and other devices. We talked about this interesting convergent concept of an operating system that has the ability to adapt to various formats. This adaptation is not yet polished and is suffering for your own ambition- the software ecosystem is still limited- but that does not mean you do not have route.

However Windows 10 will continue to have full time protagonist other types of equipment that are not smartphone. PCs, laptops, tablets and convertibles are the ones who earn more time with the new concept because in them the thing does not change much. We still have the whole desktop life more or less, and the appealing concepts of universal applications which among other things will make the Xbox One copper a new dimension this summer.

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In mobile, however, things are more complex. We saw as the Lumia 950 XL was improved in many fields, some impressions were confirmed with the Lumia 950and the recent Lumia 650. Good terminals however have to compete with a very powerful catalog of Android – based devices and, of course with the Apple iPhone.

Buying Nokia has not sit well with Microsoft, which also found a support almost zero by the other manufacturers. Except for honorable exceptions – the HP Elite x3 and Acer Jade Primo are betting acclamations – supply terminals and hardware manufacturers supporting the ecosystem were too short. Having seen, the hardware could not be the key to that strategy.

Joining the (former) enemy

In Microsoft failed to see that in this segment things got difficult, so some months ago began making moves to conquer the most interesting mobile users from the other side: the software.

It acknowledged in a recent interview we did exclusively to Tim O’Brien, CEO of Microsoft communication. This directive was clear that the focus was effective in applications and services, and Microsoft has already made significant efforts in this regard.

We have seen how Office has come to the iPad, as Cortana is now on Android and iOS, and as their mobile applications are gaining users platforms who would theoretically never install anything to come from Redmond. But the fact is that Microsoft knows of software, and if you do not know, takes talent.

In fact what is clear is that Microsoft is putting together a brutal ecosystem in Android and iOS, and here are intriguing projects and ideas that are inevitable: will fork Android by Microsoft?

It does not seem that moment the idea appeals to those responsible for Microsoft, but what is clear is that the options are there and Microsoft is being ambitious in this area. In fact your initial bet is clear to mobile applications, but clearly in cloud services has much to offer thanks to the proposals already defended in Windows Phone and continue to strengthen in Windows 10 but have not driven both on other platforms mobile.

This is where there is much room for growth for a company that is among the few that can compete in the cloud with giants like Google and in fact is also making significant efforts in promising fields such as artificial intelligence. Microsoft to offer your keyboard in iOS, or Cortana, or Skype, or Outlook or Office is fine, but maybe the real Trojan horse is in services.

Microsoft will not give up the segment of smartphones… Just change the focus!

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