Three of my favorite blogs ( continuations.com , avc.com , and ben-evans.com ) are focused on the Microsoft/Nokia deal today…and I’ve found myself sucked into the chatter across all three already this morning…so I thought I would just repost/reorganize a few of my comments from those places here:
I don’t buy the statement that “Microsoft had to do this”. In fact, I’m not even sure I would say Microsoft should have done this…
Yes - mobile is the trend (and likely the future), but Microsoft doesn’t have to be a player in the mobile OS world, or the mobile Hardware world.
I just think they are stuck playing the ‘me too’ game right now…instead of focusing on where they are still winning (xbox and the office suite to name two). I’m not saying they are out, I’m just saying that if I was a betting man, I would not put my money on them.
They *could* have simply decided to focus more on the software side of things (the one area they actually still have a reasonable brand in). If they went all in on creating a killer mobile experience for their office suite, they would likely make a bigger long term splash than trying to compete on all levels with every other big company (ie. they need to be slashing and consolidating products to refocus their company and mission rather than expanding and trying to remain a 'big player’ across the board).
Here’s the real problem…they are trying to be important in too many places at once right now…are they a corporate software solutions company? a gaming company? a hardware company? an OS company? a consumer software company? a consulting company? The answer at the moment is yes to all these (plus more)…and that’s not really a good thing at all.
They have an amazing history, are full of really smart people, and still have a (consumer based) powerful brand…they should use all that to define the future rather than chase after everyone else’s vision of it…
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Kevin has a day job as CTO of Veritonic and is spending nights & weekends hacking on Share Game Tape. You can also check out some of his open source code on GitHub or connect with him on Twitter @falicon or via email at kevin at falicon.com.
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