- End the war on open source and instead embrace it. This unlocked a lot of potential and put a stop to a lot of counter productive efforts in MS where the only point was "not invented here". Some of these things were already tolerated grudgingly under Balmer but Nadella made it company policy to embrace it 100%. There are many examples of this ranging from reviving .net via the mono ecosystem, launching mssql on linux, making linux a first class citizen on Azure (now a key driver in the valuation), vs code studio, the github acquisition, embracing chromium, etc. Through this, MS regained a lot of the street credibility with developers that it used to have in the nineties and subsequently lost.
- Kill off windows phone and de-emphasize the windows brand in favor of an office on any platform type approach. Office now runs great on ipads, os-x, browsers, android, as well as windows laptops. Not having the distraction of windows first means all the non windows teams that are making lots of money (azure, office, etc) can now focus on doing the right thing on non MS platforms instead of up-selling windows to their users. Balmer left Nadella one huge headache which was the Nokia acquisition (I used to work there). Nadella killed that off swiftly and decisively by effectively starving it of resources and almost immediately cutting staff by the tens of thousands.
- Fix the toxic work culture. There was a lot of negativity around this topic under Balmer. It seems much less of an issue these days.
The only thing that is compensating all these troubles is cloud and that too had been hazy on actual utilization. The engineering execution in Azure begs a question about how much worse it can get. Out of all providers, Azure literally has been the least impressive from technical standpoint in everything from UX to availability to features to documentation to API design. Once cloud market saturates and race to bottom ensues, Microsoft could have big trouble in maintaining current revenues and profits due to lack of new products. It will take few quarters before stock market reacts but all of these same people praising Nadella right now would suddenly come around and brand him the worst CEO in history as soon as stock dips.
Good, Microsoft spent a decade building "me too" products that weren't that good and even if they were nobody used anyway. Jumping on bandwagons too late didn't help them at all in fact it made them look like a bit of a joke.
The market keeps hitting new record highs and that's helping a lot of stocks
On the flip side, CEOs tend to get an undeserved amount of blame during recessions and market declines.
Home automation and smart assistance as platforms are profit loss centers to either invade user privacy in the case of Amazon and Google or as a moat for more profitable hardware in the case of Apple. Microsoft has positioned itself as a neutral platform provider with Azure. There is no real money in the home automation market. The only people who make money in a gold rush are the people who sell shovels.
Wearables outside of the Apple Watch aren’t doing too well either.
There is no “self driving market”. There might be one in the future.
Windows revenues is still falling like crazy and obviously there is no Smarthone story from Nadella yet.
There is a story. Microsoft is supporting both Android and iOS with appps, development tools, and Azure.
Seeing that Google has only made $21 billion in profit on Android in its entire existence (came out in the Oracle trial), and that most phone manufacturers are losing money, the entire phone market is low profit margin business for anyone who isn’t Apple, the carriers, or component suppliers (ie Samsung).
As far as cloud, it’s a lot easier to convince a company to use Azure than GCP and their relative market share shows as much.
Windows Phone already looked like it was flopping and MS needed to be part of mobile to continue to stay relevant with its consumer software. On the server, people were flocking to AWS to run Linux software, which was very much a second class citizen on Azure under Balmer.
Nadella fixed these problems and now office and azure revenues are doing great and even Windows is not looking too bad these days. This is why MS just crossed the 1 trillion $ valuation point. That would not have happened under Balmer.
Also, these new markets are absolutely not fed. Smart speakers is already $7B market, Apple/Android/Fitbit wearables at $10B and along with smart home are the fastest growing markets. No one now doubts if cars would self-drive in 5-10 years. That would be a market that would transcend economies of many countries and industries.
The portal could be better, but all of the large cloud providers have areas of difficulty there. For the basics like spinning up a VM, it's pretty easy these days.
Is Surface really a growth centers?
Azure is Linux. Without Linux Azure don't mean a much, and without the goodwill that is coming from Nadella, developers are not going to deploy anything on Azure.
Having said that we still don't know how much Azure is within the Cloud Business, which includes Office 365.
Microsoft, by and large is a company that does more business to developers and Enterprise than to Consumers. How many consumers have actually spent money buying or upgrading Windows?
Without the brand images changes and good faith, how many of those I.T people were willing to continue put money into their products?
>It was Ballmer who was willing to pour in investment like crazy in Hololens as well Bing.
And we know how both of those ended.
There are definitely a lot more new things Microsoft could do. But he managed to turn the 2nd most hated company in the industry, ( First will definitely be Oracle ) and now with people thinking Microsoft have redeemed themselves, all while growing its business revenue and profits.
I don't care about the rest, they can be stellar. Its the same company, same top management making these decisions. If somebody makes 8 nice and 2 evil decisions, these don't cancel out.
probably because that boat has sailed.
That's like saying, having an IAS father makes no impact for someone wanting to be a top doctor in the US.
In reality having an IAS dad means having access to tuitions, mentoring, ability to afford a whole lot of other things like say education in a foreign university etc etc.
Most kids don't have access to this because they have to work immediately after they finish their education in India, or worse have to work through their education. There is no one back home providing financial support to your family. There is also pressure to send money back home, or handle other responsibilities(eg. Marrying off a sister). Each of these things gradually drive to last straw on the Camel's back for a lot of people.
There is only that much you can do in life when you have n things demanding your attention, and resources all at the time when you should be focusing on working on that career.
That said, we are also making this huge presumption that since his dad is an IAS, he must have have shitload of money for US tuitions and rest. This isn't possible with normal salary, unless of course he is corrupted, and I find it distasteful to deduce something like that about someone specific. It is one thing to say most IAS are not honest, and it's another thing to insinuate that this particular IAS isn't honest.
We all try to make best of whatever situation we are in, and most of us (at-least I most likely) wouldn't achieve what he did even with 100x resources (lack of hard work, motivation, making excuses to ourselves). Let's not undermine that by saying "there is only that much you can do in life when you have n things demanding your attention".
Satya has two advanced degrees from US Institutions and has worked at Microsoft for over 27 years. I think his father has had very little to do with his current stature.
As an aside, salary is just about the worst way to evaluate power and privilege of government officials. By that metric, an AVP at Google is more privileged than the President of the United States.
Heck bribes itself can set your 7 generations for a life time of nobility.
There is a reason why people waste years behind cracking these exams.
The gov of India has a cadre or trained bureaucrats, who are selected after passing a rigorous exam. Its a check on your real world thinking skills in many ways.
The exam is hard, and people spend years to ensure they get through.
The people who pass are sent to the foreign services, admin services, and police services.
IAS officers have over the years earned a rep for being capable bureaucrats (modulo the level of noise coming from a massive developing World population dealing with issues ranging from poverty to corruption).
These are the people who run municipalities for what would be high populations cities in the west, secretaries to ministers and so on.
They don’t have money, but they are the nerves and ligaments of state machinery.
If you're not, you are still a big deal, on a different scale.
They still treat their enterprise customers like shit, have no opt out data collection on all their platforms now, are extending their tentacles across everything that has a processor in it, QA has actually dropped off a cliff and they've left a half finished charred pile of shit for an OS on our laps, disposable low quality line of tablet wannabees and have piled their entire effort into marketing away their problems rather than delivery.
But everyone focuses on Nadella being the second coming of corporate Jesus. Wolf in sheep's clothing I'm afraid. In ten years I bet you I am not wrong on this.
Honestly I think that windows is the best desktop platform out there (seeing as Apple can't make a keyboard that works) with all the compromises but it's difficult to actually compliment it in any way. We could be somewhere a lot better and everyone knows where that is.
For earnings and shareholders they're doing good. But for the customers, not necessarily. They're just doing barely ok in an ocean of crap.
Behind the scenes for that miserable OS, is a mountain of work to make all their parts work. No longer will there be three tcp-ip implementations over Xbox,OS,server and other teams.
A lot of this was started under ballmer. It’s comtinuing under nadella.
As to the value of office 365 - while philosophically i don't like this cloud subscription model (So, if i stop paying, i lose "license" to use software? Pfft)...i have to agree the price is very fair. I mean, even if I were to only pay for the onedrive storage (without Word, Ecel, etc.), that onedrive alone is worth $100/year. My only disappointment here is that i wish MS would pump out a native, official onedrive client for linux already. Except for my dayjob forcing me to use a windows machine for work, Linux is my personal daily driver (and for side hustles I develop only on linux)...So I totally can understand - from a capitalist perspective - why MS would not distribute the full office 365 suite for linux...but why not at least just onedrive? I'm pretty sure that many people like us who use linux would gladly use a native onedrive client. (And, while i give much props to existing onedrive clients , sorry, but i need official support from MS.)
I have not used Azure yet in any meaningful capacity, so can't say MS is doing better or worse here...but the fact that they quickly focus on supporting linux, and their pricing isn't bad is inspiring.
You didn't mention MS' recent privacy/data control issues related to windows 10 telemetry - this is a big annoyance for me...but hey, no one is perfect. And, i mean, this is the same company whose previous leader considered linux a cancer...so, even with the little disappointments that i feel about MS, i still have to give them big kudos for their positive change regardless of what wall street thinks that they're worth.
 = https://github.com/skilion/onedrive
 = https://github.com/abraunegg/onedrive
I think a better comparison would be revenue surely?
GDP is C + I + G + NX. In MSFT 10-K R&D are after the gross profit, so I is there. C attributable to MSFT is sales less costs to avoid double counting. G are taxes which are also there. We should also add D&A and Capex normally as a part of I, but for software companies it's mainly R&D that is allowed to be recognized as cost (which gives huge tax benefits and should stimulate R&D activity, in theory).
Tech is just the latest iteration and these 5 companies are our front runners. Will something else come along and dethrone them? Maybe, who knows.
The only difference i see here is these large companies are generating wealth for a much larger group of people via employment or shares. I'm willing to bet Microsoft and google have made far more millionaires then Rockefeller adjusted for inflation.
Much of these productivity gains due to the scalability of software solutions result in fat margins for those companies, hence the high pay for people in the tech field, but the remainder also goes to the capital owners who get more productive workers.
People used to think that Microsoft can't do hardware, but Surface has shown that MS can be more competent than most laptop manufacturers.
It sounds so frivolous when describing but in practice I noticed having a single cable thunderbolt setup is a huge win for me - I used to avoid moving my laptop because plugging in 3 cables and keeping them organized on the desk was a chore. I have to work on two laptops (I sometimes take my work laptop home) so dock is not an option either.
With thunderbolt this became a non-issue - no docks, no messy cables, just one clean USB-C cable connecting 5K monitor, charger, USB hub, network adapter.
Apple still beats them easily but MS is catching up.
Better link- https://www.cnbc.com/2019/04/25/microsoft-hits-1-trillion-ma... without the verge fluff
I think Office 365 is counted as part of Azure and it's extremely popular, but that wouldn't make it an apples to apples comparison wrt AWS.