I was at Microsoft’s campus in Redmond a week before the Build developer conference, and I wanted to know what was going on with Windows after a reorg split the team into different divisions. Was Microsoft really preparing itself for a world without Windows? Nadella was ready to tell me that Windows isn’t going away – of course Windows isn’t going away – but he also wanted to explain his latest buzzwordy vision for the future of the Microsoft: AI, Intelligent Cloud, and Intelligent Edge.
Windows might still be here, but after talking to Nadella, I did get the sense that Windows is no longer as central to the company’s future plans as it once was. Instead of trying to make everything run on Windows (as his predecessor Steve Ballmer was trying to do), Nadella wants to ensure that everything can work with Windows.
The decline of Windows is definitely overblown in the media, but Microsoft did miss the next big thing by a thousand miles, and mindshare-wise, this has had enormous consequences. It hasn’t hurt Microsoft much financially though, and you can be sure Windows isn’t going anywhere any time soon.
Microsoft is likely to be still around even if Windows completely dies off.
The revenue of Windows is showing a decline but the sales of Office365 are up. What going on in Android has in some businesses displaced where staff would have a PC also it has displaced in some homes where they would have a PC.
Competition against windows is getting better. Google is talking about adding desktop Linux applications to chromebooks inside containers. Result chromebooks will be able to take a larger marketshare.
Next flatpak and snap on Linux is starting to get shorted out. This is kind of a solution to dependency hell so that people can install newer versions of applications without risking breaking their complete systems under Linux.
Microsoft Products lacking useful new features. This is a form of stagnation. Stagnation of a products make it more possible for open source clones to catch up on the wanted features.