08-26-2013 12:23 PM
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  1. Simon Tupper's Avatar
    So basically since Zune was in the already saturated and satisfied market, they shouldn't have released it in the first place? BS.

    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,
    still google was nothing more than a browser and look where they are now? MS wasn't prepared for this? Who's fault is that? Bill Gates? in 2007? THAT is BS...You either react the right way or the wrong way. Ballmer misled the company.
    07-14-2013 08:24 PM
  2. jdholland79's Avatar
    Thats funny I got a custom ringtone on my nokia lumina
    07-14-2013 09:02 PM
  3. spaulagain's Avatar
    still google was nothing more than a browser and look where they are now? MS wasn't prepared for this? Who's fault is that? Bill Gates? in 2007? THAT is BS...You either react the right way or the wrong way. Ballmer misled the company.
    First off, Google wasn't just a browser in 2007. In fact, their Chrome browser has nothing to do with Android. Android was its own company that Google eventually backed and bought, so it wasn't even their own idea. And Google has been known to start all kinds of pet projects with no guarantee they will follow through with them. Also, Microsoft had started a project to replace WM in 2004, but that was canned. It wasn't until 2008 when Android was released that WP starter development.

    Now you can claim that delay was all Ballmer's fault, but that's where all of us remain ignorant to the truth. Microsoft is a public company, one that has shareholders and board of directors. Often times these people trump what the CEO thinks is right. My company just got investors and has a similar board of directors, I can tell you first hand that our CEO has been told what to do, as our company has changed drastically since. Maybe MS's shareholders didn't think a better mobile OS mattered or was important enough.

    And again, I didn't say they shouldn't have moved faster or he didn't make a mistake, I'm simply saying you don't know the reasons why they didn't. And bringing a false claim of their Mobile market dominance doesn't help your case. Blaming someone from the bench is easy, doesn't make it right or true.

    While I like a Steve Jobs kind of personality lot better, I think Ballmer is doing what needs to be done for Microsoft. This is the first time I've seen MS move so quickly, improve their products design so overwhelmingly, and really focus on the consumer user experience. I actually think Microsoft is now leading the industry. Look at Apples horrible attempt to echo WP with iOS7.
    Laura Knotek and a5cent like this.
    07-14-2013 09:35 PM
  4. Simon Tupper's Avatar
    Surprisingly a lot of people like iOS 7
    07-14-2013 10:06 PM
  5. Keith Wallace's Avatar
    I disagree about the lack of innovation. Remember, the core of the OS design is innovation, the live tiles. It's hard to innovate on that core feature though, because you then alter the very thing that sold people on your OS. Granted, there is the evolution of tile sizes (which was very smart, and I personally think could use a bit more expansion), and the addition of more color options (though I personally believe that a color wheel HAS to exist, because the IPS display of the 920 doesn't have the same color presentation of the AMOLED displays of the opposing devices, and not everyone likes the hand-picked Theme options).

    Now, it's also a bit tough to innovate too greatly. The Games hub isn't NECESSARILY an innovation, but it's a great way to bake in a popular feature (games) into the OS. Honestly, something that I disliked about being on Android was looking for apps. Expecting me to frequently rearrange my apps by use at that time is unreasonable, and having to hop into an untabbed (like the alphabetical tabs on WP) app drawer is a les--than-ideal solution. the Games hub got my primary draw to the OS (the Xbox gaming potential) into its own place, so I don't have to sift through the built-in things (like Office and OneNote) that I don't care to mess with much, meaning as someone who mostly plays games on his phone (from an "app use" standpoint), the Games hub is something of a HUGE deal. I get to bypass the things I don't use much.

    It's hard to complain about a lack of innovation, though. They're taking what people like and improving it. Evolution is enough; we don't need a revolution. I'd rather have a nice-looking, smooth OS than a cluttered one that tries to push the future on me. Honestly, what are the needed software innovations that Microsoft could offer? Trying to bridge the OS gap between their services is a good move, and baking in things like the Games hub and Office helps to reach a broad audience (the gamers and the workers). They also did a decent job of keeping the OS install small (under 1.75 GB), which I'm happy about.

    My complaints tend to come back to lack of software support (read: not enough quality Xbox games, particularly form Microsoft itself), along with this catch-up inclusion of hardware (we're about to have the newest device--the 1020--on the market, and it's going to be packing a SoC from roughly 18 months ago, which is a tad disappointing, especially at $300).
    dgr_874 likes this.
    07-14-2013 11:42 PM
  6. Keith Wallace's Avatar
    Surprisingly a lot of people like iOS 7
    You could literally install Windows Phone on an apple device, call the operating system, iOS Phone, and the Apple crowd would do backflips to celebrate, all while calling Apple "innovative," and saying that they did what Microsoft should have done (despite having an exact replica of the WP OS on an iPhone).
    07-14-2013 11:44 PM
  7. snowmutt's Avatar
    Yep, every Sunday during football season I am sure I am the best coach in the NFL from my couch.

    Ballmer is a CEO of a multi-billion dollar company. 10 years ago, it was a multi-million dollar one. He has ushered it kicking & screaming into the mobile age.



    His worst sin?? He is not a button down, stuffy executive. He is himself. Yes, some products have tanked under his watch. But so what? Microsoft is effective, profitable, fun to be a part of and improving their products. I will vote to keep them.
    07-14-2013 11:44 PM
  8. squire777's Avatar
    Google and Apple churn out just as many hardware flops as MS does, but the only difference is that the public perception of the two former companies is more positive so they are usually forgiven. MS is still the punchline for many tech geeks so MS' flops get publicized way more (I mean after all these years how many BSOD and Kin jokes do you see being thrown around?).

    MS' hardware division still brings out innovative products. Things like the Arc touch mouse are great but hardly get any publicity. The Surface made more of an impact on the tablet market than most Android tablets have but we don't hear much about it. The Kinect was the fastest selling device IIRC and worked great.

    About 7 or 8 years ago when I was still in university I learned about how MS was working on Touch Surface tables and large touch screen displays (the kind you see on news channels these days) before touch input was widely popular. I think they have a lot going on behind the scenes that we don't hear about but they are just more conservative and calculated in the products that they release.
    snowmutt likes this.
    07-15-2013 12:06 AM
  9. Simon Tupper's Avatar
    Yep, every Sunday during football season I am sure I am the best coach in the NFL from my couch.

    Ballmer is a CEO of a multi-billion dollar company. 10 years ago, it was a multi-million dollar one. He has ushered it kicking & screaming into the mobile age.



    His worst sin?? He is not a button down, stuffy executive. He is himself. Yes, some products have tanked under his watch. But so what? Microsoft is effective, profitable, fun to be a part of and improving their products. I will vote to keep them.
    I am pretty sure I would have done a worst job, but does someone need to be a CEO to evaluate someone's work?
    07-15-2013 12:09 AM
  10. driver_king's Avatar
    Meh, I would say that they are slow, but then again, GDR2 RTM'd back in April, so... can't say for sure. There are also those legitimate bugs keeping Blue from coming out earlier. I think the crux of the whole situation are the carriers and their unusual need to test each update. They don't really require this for Apple to my understanding, unless I'm missing something. I don't know why exactly Microsoft can't just say 'to heck with waiting, here's the update'. I mean the infrastructure is clearly there. But there must be other things going on that are preventing such a thing from happening.
    07-15-2013 12:25 AM
  11. Simon Tupper's Avatar
    Meh, I would say that they are slow, but then again, GDR2 RTM'd back in April, so... can't say for sure. There are also those legitimate bugs keeping Blue from coming out earlier. I think the crux of the whole situation are the carriers and their unusual need to test each update. They don't really require this for Apple to my understanding, unless I'm missing something. I don't know why exactly Microsoft can't just say 'to heck with waiting, here's the update'. I mean the infrastructure is clearly there. But there must be other things going on that are preventing such a thing from happening.
    adding a notification center was more problematic than they thought it would be. Probably because they were not planning on doing so and adding a big feature like this when your OS wasn't built for it in the first place can lead to bugs. If you ask me... MS should have known from the beginning that the notification center is an useful feature that people appreciate.
    07-15-2013 01:15 AM
  12. martinmc78's Avatar
    Interesting point of view OP...

    Microsoft Research have "innovated" virtually every major technological advance in the mobile/PC/tablet space over the last 15 years. It's the "implementation" of those ideas has been severely lacking.

    You look at almost everything Apple or Google have done and the chances are MS had a product like they have 3 or 4 years previously they just failed to market it or chose not to.

    Why is it do you think that MS gets royalties from both of them for every device they sell?

    The way I see it from a business standpoint they have it pretty much spot on. They have been earning money from competing devices via patents and software licensing for years and now they are restructuring and pushing out great hardware and software of there own.

    Ballmer has overseen virtually all of this and while it hasn't been a perfectly smooth ride, getting to where they are today takes someone with a big set of balls.

    Where did you get the info from that he's also in charge of xbox? The last I heard Julie Larson-Green has got that job. Also whether Don Mattrick was fired or left of his own accord to take over Zynga is open for debate, the same goes for Sinofsky after the Surface launch. Kind of makes your statement saying Apple fires people that don't perform a bit odd. MS also fired the guy that came out with the #Dealwithit after the 24 hour online check-in for the Xbox One was first revealed. Looks like they fire people all the time that have trouble performing.

    What they have been doing a lot of recently is listening to consumer feedback and changing services accordingly - the turnaround on the xbox one and the additions to the OS on Windows 8.1 were all changes based on customer feedback. The ever loving press undoubtedly call this a weakness and call the original plans mistakes but from a consumer point of view isn't it good news?? A company that actually listens to what you want and makes changes to services within a standard 3-6 month upgrade cycle. Do Apple do that? Do Google?

    Personally im looking forward to the next two years from a consumer perspective as I think this is all MS will need to finally get the 3 screens philosophy firing on all cylinders. The Xbox One will be better than the PS4, Windows 8.1 will solve a lot of issues. Windows Phone 8.1 will bring the phones up to standard with the competition.

    What puts it in front of the competition? All three devices will be one big product family with integration across all devices. With the restructuring of MS we now have one big company with integration across all services.

    I say leave Ballmer where he is and let Microsoft Research keep innovating the cool tech that everyone else want's to use.

    Sorry this turned into a bit of a fanboy post but when my views completely differ from the OP, it needed a bit of justification.
    Cleavitt76 likes this.
    07-15-2013 04:00 AM
  13. LMZR's Avatar
    This is why Ballmer isn't getting much respect as a CEO hahaha
    I think he's too exhausted to do anything. :)
    snowmutt and Simon Tupper like this.
    07-15-2013 04:36 AM
  14. AngryNil's Avatar
    When most news websites want him out... There's something to understand there.
    Not saying you're wrong, but the media is not something to base your opinion of an individual on. A more recent example would be the Trayvon Martin case, where NBC edited audio to portray Zimmerman as a racist. Regardless of your feelings on the case, that's just insanely pathetic and yet, it's the world we live in. Many technology "journalists" think they know it all, see Microsoft making missteps, and hence hold something against Ballmer. That's simply not an informed opinion, it would be like taking advice from an Internet forum. Seriously.

    Fact is we have no idea what exactly is the problem. Yes, it could be Ballmer, but for all we know he's been the one fighting bloody battles with a whole team of executives who don't give a crap about collaboration and the wider ecosystem.
    a5cent, DavidinCT and snowmutt like this.
    07-15-2013 05:50 AM
  15. Samst22's Avatar
    Firstly, no one has any clue what is coming in windows phone 8.1. The 1080p and quad core support is coming in GDR3, which is still windows phone 8.0. All we know so far is that 8.1 will have 'start screen innovations' and we also know that Bing and Skype will be better integrated (Oh and maybe a notification centre... and potentially a common app store). Apart from that, we have no idea. I'm imagining that they will take a couple ideas from Windows 8.1, including new tile sizes and more colour choice, however this isn't enough to be considered as 'start screen innovations', so I'm hoping that MSFT pulls something big out the bag for this, we all know it's taking a long time. The reason I believe it is taking so long to bring out these updates is that they were concentrating on 'repairing' Windows 8 and releasing Windows 8.1 and so a lot of the resources which may have been used to progress windows phone were used on Windows 8.1 instead.

    On the Ballmer note, I think he's great. I couldn't imagine anyone else as CEO (except Bill Gates) who could do a better job than Ballmer.
    snowmutt likes this.
    07-15-2013 06:50 AM
  16. HeyCori's Avatar
    The guy in charge of the Xbox division was doing a good job and Ballmer just fired him. Then he named himself boss of the Xbox division right after ruining it (for me). I just can't appreciate his work.
    That's a flat out lie. Don Mattrick willingly quit to become CEO of Zynga. In fact, the co-founder of Zynga even stated that he purposely recruited Don for CEO.

    Don Mattrick Is Now the CEO of Zynga [UPDATE: Mattrick weighs in]
    Today is a big day. Im excited to announce that Don Mattrick will be joining us as Zyngas new CEO and member of our Board. I wanted to let you all know why I made the decision to recruit Don and what I think it means for all of us.
    And here you are blaming Ballmer because Don has the opportunity to become CEO of another company. And Ballmer only made himself head of the division long enough to finish the reorganization and then he passed it off.

    Considering we've done this dance before, this is simply Tupper's monthly I hate Ballmer thread where all he does is spread FUD in an attempt to discredit everything Ballmer has done. Everything he says should be taken with a HEAVY grain of salt.
    martinmc78, stmav, a5cent and 2 others like this.
    07-15-2013 06:50 AM
  17. Simon Tupper's Avatar
    I hate Ballmer[/I] thread where all he does is spread FUD in an attempt to discredit everything Ballmer has done. Everything he says should be taken with a HEAVY grain of salt.
    I haven't posted in months........ And im generally positive about MS.
    Last edited by Simon Tupper; 07-15-2013 at 10:12 AM.
    07-15-2013 09:52 AM
  18. Simon Tupper's Avatar
    I'm not saying that Ballmer should be perfect, but seriously... The guy should at least let someone else take care of every interview. They need to rebuild the company's image and a quick way to do so is to change the face everyone associate with the company. Ballmer isn't good in public relations and its a very important part of his job. Add to that the relatively low number of sales and I don't think anyone should blame me or the medias to dislike his work.
    07-15-2013 10:36 AM
  19. stmav's Avatar
    Again, no one is blaming anyone. But it's also a matter of personal opinions. Not everyone agrees with that outlook of Ballmer. And as far as the media, I'm not sure it matters who is CEO, as long as it's Microsoft, the opinion will be the same. But there really is no need to create another thread about this. Just add any new information to one of your existing ones.
    a5cent likes this.
    07-15-2013 10:51 AM
  20. Simon Tupper's Avatar
    Again, no one is blaming anyone. But it's also a matter of personal opinions. Not everyone agrees with that outlook of Ballmer. And as far as the media, I'm not sure it matters who is CEO, as long as it's Microsoft, the opinion will be the same. But there really is no need to create another thread about this. Just add any new information to one of your existing ones.
    Creating a new thread makes it easier for everyone to understand my point of view on the new information I'm adding to the subject. While adding it to an old thread is ineffective and would only create confusion resulting in people talking about the old subject.
    07-15-2013 11:26 AM
  21. stmav's Avatar
    When the subject is the same thing, which in case calling out Ballmer and Microsoft being slow, there is no need for another thread. Per your forum rules.

    [INFO]
    Cross Posting - Do not post duplicate questions or topics in multiple forums or threads.[/INFO]

    Again, no one is saying not to state your point of view, please do. But there is no need for multiple threads.
    07-15-2013 12:01 PM
  22. Robert Carpenter's Avatar
    The guy in charge of the Xbox division was doing a good job and Ballmer just fired him. Then he named himself boss of the Xbox division right after ruining it (for me). I just can't appreciate his work.
    This is incorrect information. He left, he wasn't fired. Please don't try to say otherwise because it was proven.

    The restructuring of the company is going to fix a lot of these problems that you are talking about. I'm not going to explain how and why they will fix it because it's very involved, but it is definitely going to help their products come together better.
    07-15-2013 02:39 PM
  23. ag1986's Avatar
    This is incorrect information. He left, he wasn't fired. Please don't try to say otherwise because it was proven.

    The restructuring of the company is going to fix a lot of these problems that you are talking about. I'm not going to explain how and why they will fix it because it's very involved, but it is definitely going to help their products come together better.
    This is not really true. Ballmer restructured MS into what we call a functional organisation as opposed to what it used to be, a divisional organisation. This is not a good thing; we were discussing this in my part-time MBA study group.

    MS' current org structure is an imitation of Apple's and that is a bad idea. Apple has very few products, all of which are tightly controlled and integrate very well and are predominantly oriented towards the consumer market. Jobs was, and now Cook is, aware that such a hierarchy can only be viable when you have a very small number of products. They have basically: iPhone, iPod, iPad (which are basically the same), Macs and a software division.

    MS has a wide range of products with an equally wide range of targets, from the corporate IT market to the gamer. There are at least ten products with a $1B+ run-rate (fun fact - the iPhone alone makes more money than all of MS put together). Under their current org structure, each function (Marketing, Engineering, Finance et al) are under one VP while each product cuts across these functions. So where before you had one integrated division in charge of Xbox development, programming, marketing and whatnot, each of those are split across the organisation. That's going to impact collaboration and focus.

    Every organisation of any size is structured divisionally. Please see strat which echoes most of my thoughts.
    a5cent likes this.
    07-15-2013 03:13 PM
  24. ag1986's Avatar
    Interesting point of view OP...

    Microsoft Research have "innovated" virtually every major technological advance in the mobile/PC/tablet space over the last 15 years. It's the "implementation" of those ideas has been severely lacking.

    You look at almost everything Apple or Google have done and the chances are MS had a product like they have 3 or 4 years previously they just failed to market it or chose not to.

    Why is it do you think that MS gets royalties from both of them for every device they sell?

    The way I see it from a business standpoint they have it pretty much spot on. They have been earning money from competing devices via patents and software licensing for years and now they are restructuring and pushing out great hardware and software of there own.
    I haven't heard of MS getting royalties from Apple. As far as Android goes, most of the patent revenue is from licenses for FAT32, which is what allows consumers to plug phones into Windows PCs.

    Also, the iPhone alone makes more money than all of MS (or at least it did sometime last year - not sure exactly when).

    MS are basically late to the Web game and the consumer hardware space. Apple saw the latter opportunity and jumped on it, MS figured corporate licensing was all they needed. Google saw the potential of the Internet, to which MS was always a latecomer. While I don't deny that MS (Gates' MS, not Ballmer's) has done great things, I really haven't seen anything (consumer not enterprise) that was well-conceived and executed from them in the last few years (WP-no market share, W8 - debacle etc). I will however give you Xbox, but postulate that Xbox did well in spite of MS' management and not because of it.
    Simon Tupper likes this.
    07-15-2013 03:20 PM
  25. bilzkh's Avatar
    If the reorg is of any indication, I think Ballmer is on the right track with his decisions.

    By making MS a more functionally-driven organization he is ensuring that each product and service MS produces supports its sibling-products/services, and that *everyone* in the company is on the same page. And for what it's worth, Ballmer's MS is still a profitable company.
    07-15-2013 03:55 PM
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