Thursday, 20 October 2011

What is Steve talking about?

"Speaking at the high profile annual Web 2.0 Summit in San Francisco ahead of the Microsoft’s results, Ballmer was asked to compare the appeal of a phone powered by Microsoft Windows and a Google Android device.

"He said: “You don’t need to be a computer scientist to use a Windows phone and you do to use and Android phone…It is hard for me to be excited about the Android phones.”

"Ballmer was fairer to the company’s main mobile rival, Apple, saying: “Apple is a good competitor, but a different one.”

Microsoft's Steve Ballmer attacks Android phones - Telegraph'

This is a very strange performance by Steve Ballmer, and one that tells us a great deal about Microsoft's current position in the mobile market.

Clearly Microsoft is afraid that Android is going to do for smart phones what Windows did for PCs. If you remember the 1990s the home consumer PC was innovated by Apple, but in 1990 you could spend $3,000 on a Mac. Microsoft Windows provided a platform that any vendor could build for, and the reduction in cost fueled the PC revolution which is still dominated by Microsoft.

The same process is happening now in the mobile market, only so far Google is doing a better job being Microsoft than Microsoft. Microsoft is not only technically behind the curve here on its solution, but also its model of licensing software struggles in a world of Cloud services and Open Source where revenues are generated from ads on content. Google more 'TV' model of revenue on ads tacked on to free content and services is simply winning.

Microsoft has a synergy relationship with Apple, Microsoft wants Apple as an enemy not Google. Apple wants Microsoft as an enemy not Google. The two firms understand each other, they have a long history with each other, and they both have a very centrally controlled business model. Both have struggled with the Cloud. Microsoft is making real efforts at progress, Apple gives you a device to see other people's clouds.
How the struggle between three major players for a new device space starts and how it is grounded by a larger fight for the Internet in a Cloud War

But the cloud war is still being won by Google.

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