- 07-14-2013, 03:39 AM #1
I know Apple is very slow to innovate software wise, but Microsoft doesn't have a very aggressive approach neither... Microsoft was a software company first. I know that a lot of updates makes it easier to screw up and that going progressively is safer, but I didn't see the software company show any aggressiveness. They are passive.
I wish Microsoft could wow us with amazing new ideas in WP8.1, but I know its all about being on par with everyone else. There's is the problem. Are they looking to lead the pack or they just want to be part of it?
I'm staying with WP as I love the OS, but why can't Microsoft show their teeth a little bit? Apple with iOS 7 and their new low cost iPhone will outshine WP(again) if 8.1 isn't more than what we already know. I'm not a fan of iOS7, but you guys know Apple's fans... They would buy anything that comes with the fruit's logo on it. What incentive Microsoft needs to really start the hard work?
There's nothing wrong with being at the same level as your competitors, but a race needs a winner and whoever aim for the first place has more chances of being #1.
Smoothness or specs? Its proven by now, the spec sheet is still important and the top selling smartphones all have better specs than most WP. Blogger loves to compare specs and people use them to know which smartphone they show buy. The end result is that Android rules the smartphones.
WP can succeed, but again Microsoft isn't helping. I guess, "Be so good they can't ignore you". Should be in Ballmer's office. Seriously how many times a CEO can miss the boat before he gets fired? Apple fires who ever isn't capable enough. Yes, Microsoft is more profitable, but the whole world love to take a good laugh at them and Ballmer whenever they can... That's never good... Tim Cook is not as good as Steve Jobs, yet I don't see much hate going towards him.. Ballmer removed the great new features from the Xbox One and fired the guy in charge of the Xbox team to take the lead. Now the Xbox is not better than the PS4.
The big reorg is good. Fine. But who's in charge? The same guy who seems to screw up everytime. I know that Ballmer isn't going anywhere until they have no other choice, but to fire him... But I still hope that one day I will wake up and he will have retired for good. When most news websites want him out... There's something to understand there.
I hope I didn't kill you interest in MS' products I deeply love them, but I needed to share my thoughts on the subject. Microsoft delivers good products that could be great if they had a CEO with a better vision.
This makes me think of... The Peter principle... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_Principle
- 07-14-2013, 04:19 AM #3
Good points. Actually, great points! I agree with all of them, it does seem Microsoft only now and then adds innovative features. It seems that Windows Phone 8 didn't have any innovative features much (besides the kernel switch) compared to Windows Phone 7. I do know that there are still lots of bugs to fix, such as the hanging and restarting bug, and also improving the smoothness to match Windows Phone 7 again, so my theory is that they're working to get those bugs squashed. In the long run, I would appreciate it much more for a bug fix rather than an innovative feature as that makes the experience with the phone much, much better. If Microsoft is working hard to fix those bugs, then I don't mind at all.
That's my two cents.
- 07-14-2013, 07:26 AM #5
I also generally agree with you. The way I see it though, is that with Windows 8 and other products such as WP, XBOX etc. that they are essentially going through a big rebuilding process and transition period. Windows 8 was essentially built ground up to cater for touch/mobile and while it would be nice to have all functionality, no doubt it needs to be done in a way that it doesn't cause problems with the core experience. As their products are refined and services come together then it will be easier to judge performance.
I don't think it's neccesarily fair to compare Microsoft's current product line to something Apple has refined over a period of time, but no doubt that is who they will ultimately be compared to. So yes, I will say they need to find a way to accelerate their transition. I think Ballmer is the man for this transition more in that I don't think changing CEOs when things don't go right is the solution. This was a vision that needs to be ridden out. If it ultimately fails, then that is when I think you say Ballmer is no longer the man for the situation.
- 07-14-2013, 11:18 AM #6
I must disagree on all of your points. I believe Ballmer has done an excellent job leading MSFT through a very difficult 10 years. Do not forget they had the Justice Dept so far up there hooch they were unable to release very few innovative products to the public. The things MSFT are doing now have been in the works for many, many years. I believe the AAPL's and GOOG's of the world knew the direction MSFT was taking and simply out-paced them because they had no such government intervention to worry about.
I'm not going to run through there history as it would turn into a wall-o-text like the OP posted. You do see MSFT moving very quickly now as the whole government anti-trust thing is behind them. Ironically, look who the government has there eye on now. The AAPL's and GOOG's of the world. AAPL was just found guilty of anti-trust charges in the e-Book business and GOOG, having there own anti-trust problems, is generally viewed as an "Evil" company.
Critizing Ballmer is cherry picking. Them man has been stuck with a set of kiddie gloves on him for the past 10 years. I think he should be judged for the here and now because the gloves are off...
07-14-2013, 12:14 PM #8
- 75 Posts
All really good thoughts and I agree that WP fans always seem to be waiting on that next big update to bring features that get picked on by the media for being left out( customs ringtones, rotation lock, VPN). I'm also disappointed to see WP 8.1 delayed until 2014, but very happy that they had a GDR1-3 plan.
As much as I cringe everytime Ballmer runs up on stage at an announcement, I like his enthusiasm and if he is responsible for the product and software direction of WP8 and W8 then I think he's doing great. These changes have awakened my love for MSFT and I want to see them back on top again.
- 07-14-2013, 01:14 PM #10
But when you think about it, Microsoft has been going backward a lot lately and it's never good. It's a sign of weakness that the media will inevitably use against you. I think Ballmer did a terrible job. His decisions brought money, but also a whole lot of bad press.
It is always fair to compare a company to Apple as they are leading the market with google. All Windows Phone updates were not living up to the hype and they were disappointing. Windows 8 felt unfinished at launch and I hope we'll get more in 8.1 than what have already been announced, but Microsoft was never good for surprises.
Overall Microsoft makes good products, but they don't have care enough for details. Details makes the difference between a good product and a great product. Their are "rough" compared to iOS 7 and maverick that seem to be more polished. But again you have to like Apple products, which I don't.
Last edited by Simon Tupper; 07-14-2013 at 01:30 PM.
- 07-14-2013, 02:58 PM #12
Last edited by Simon Tupper; 07-14-2013 at 03:24 PM.
- 07-14-2013, 04:17 PM #14
Microsoft is slow? They just completely revolutionized their entire portfolio in less than 2 years!!
Microsoft is a huuuuuge company. And one that has been siloed for years. Companies like that take time to make changes and move products. That's why they are restructuring the company.
07-14-2013, 04:23 PM #16
- 1,107 Posts
Very good points there!
I have always thought MS as a passive company as well, though for their credit they have managed do a rare thing on tech and keep themself on the top for much over 20 years. Only place where they have always been behind a lot is mobile, be it the reign of Nokia from 1999 to 2008 and Apple, Android reign to this day.
Also for their credit Windows Phone and Modern UI have been big gamble for them. Though you could also argue quite easily that this again is only reacting to the market trends. Windows Phone has been a failure in pure numbers, there's no escaping from that. Like said above, there's a huge transition phase going inside Microsoft as they make the organisation and products to discuss each other. Key there is that there needs to be a point when this all comes together and not be ongoing discussion years to come.
MS could have also been in the forefront of the change and let others try to catch them.
- 07-14-2013, 04:37 PM #17
I know negativity is not fun to read, but how Ballmer have helped the company is still a mystery to me.
- 07-14-2013, 05:00 PM #18
After all Microsoft have a huge profit. I think for the most parts Ballmer have done a good job. Windows Phone 8 are a relative new system and it take time to develope a operating system.
Was Bill Gates any better with the Windows Vista and bad systems like the millenium edition?
iOS and Android have been around since 2007 and have much longer time:
Windows Phone Blue Update Plagued By Bugs and Delayed Until Next Year
And maybe with the new structure at Microsoft things will improve:
Meet Terry Myerson, the most important man at Microsoft | The Verge
But I think the most important for the ordinary user is the app situation. Even that is better now:
Growth returns to the Windows Phone Store as Microsoft announce 160,000 apps, 200 million monthly transactions | WMPoweruser
- 07-14-2013, 06:33 PM #21
Windows Mobile was horrible. It tried to pack a regular PC interface on a 3 inch screen, not to mention it was plagued with issues that are common with the likes of Android. And slapping Windows 7 or any other MS OS of the time on a Tablet was a joke.
Blackberry and Apple created the first Mobile devices that were truly functional and optimized. And that's why they were/are so "big" in the mobile industry.
For the record, Zune was a great product. The mobile device was on par with the iPod and the desktop app blows iTunes out of the water. It was simply too late to the game. iPod entered the market at the turn of the decade, but Zune wasn't truly developed until 5+ years later. It was too late then.
Xbox? The thing has overcasted PlayStations for much of its life. And that was all during Ballmer's control of MS. Doesn't mean he was the reason it was successful, but he's hardly the BS doom and gloom you're trying to paint.
Ballmer is always awkward in interviews and on stage, some people just don't have the right personality.
Gates made MS the king through developers and businesses, Ballmer is now try to reach the consumers. Something gates failed at miserably IMO.
- 07-14-2013, 06:57 PM #22
He not doom and gloom for Microsoft, but he's not the leader MS needs.
Personality is important in public relations and you must admit that he hurts Microsoft's image.
The Zune was a good product, but a failure is a failure.
Do you mean to say that since windows Mobile wasn't good enough Ballmer was right to do absolutely nothing about it until it was too late? Tablets were not selling well. Fine. But they could have lead that market instead of dropping the idea to fall behind later on...
Last edited by Simon Tupper; 07-14-2013 at 07:09 PM.
- 07-14-2013, 09:11 PM #25
Zune turned out to be a great foundation to expand on with Windows Phone and Windows 8. And like it or not, companies release all kinds of products that don't always pan out. It doesn't mean their CEO or anyone involved was some massive failure. Its simple, no company can be 100% successful 100% of the time, and you certainly can't expect that.
He didn't absolutely ignore Windows Mobile, it was simply not fit for the new mobile market without a complete refresh which is exactly what they did with Windows Phone.
No one predicted how quickly the mobile market would take off. The iPhone did intact revolutionize the market. But because it Microsoft's structure and history as a company, they were not prepared to react that fast. That failure was there waaaasy before Ballmer and was an issue even when Gates was involved. Because Gates was always an enterprise/business guy. He took the company that direction which made them successful throughout the 90s. Unfortunately it meant Microsoft was ill prepared for the consumer market the blew up over the past 5 years.
I never said that Ballmer made no mistakes, or that he shouldn't have moved the company faster. I simply said Microsoft never had the market you claimed they did. Mobile is new and fast growing,
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