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MSFT Down With Tech
The markets are rebounding after the U.S.’s first ever Flash PMI numbers came in above random expectations. Shares of MSFT are off with the NASDAQ. Catalysts for the stock include Windows 8, Windows Server 8, Office 15 and Windows Phone 8; expansion in the smartphone market with primary hardware partner Nokia; strides in cloud computing; profitability in the online business, including integration of Skype; and continued evolution of Kinect and next generation Xbox. The stock currently trades at 7.3x Enterprise Value / TTM Free Cash Flow.
Steve Ballmer Thinks Windows 8 Will Have 500 Million Users Next Year (Business Insider)
Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has got some crazy rose coloured glasses on when he looks at Windows 8. At a speech at the Seoul Digital Forum, he said he thinks 500 million people will be using it next year. Just to give context, Windows 7 was one of Microsoft’s most successful operating systems but it took nearly two years for Microsoft to sell the first 450 million licenses. And companies are still just getting around to buying it, with another 350 million licenses this year. To reach his target, Microsoft would need to convince its core customers (enterprises) that they want Windows 8 right away. That’s just not going to happen.
ARM-Based Windows Tablets Will Confuse Customers (Apple Insider)
Mark Moskowitz at J.P. Morgan does not see ARM-capable Windows, Windows RT, as being a major catalyst for Microsoft in the near-to-mid-term. In fact, Moskowitz believes the average consumer could be confused this fall, when Windows 8 launches. Windows 8 will feature both the Metro interface as well as the traditional Windows desktop layout, while Windows RT will be entirely Metro. “We think that the consumer could be confused and distracted by the bevy of PCs, tablets, e-readers, and hybrid devices slated for release later this year. A combination of varying operating systems and hardware form factors are the key reasons.”
T-Mobile Pleased With Windows-Phone Sales (The Seattle Times via The Next Web)
T-Mobile’s CEO, Philipp Humm, told The Seattle Times that his network is more than content with the performance of Windows Phone. Microsoft and its partners have been quite close-chested when it comes to Windows Phone sales figures, making comments of this nature revelatory. When asked how the phones were selling, he said, “We are so far quite pleased and I think Microsoft, if you talk to them, [is] quite pleased with T-Mobile.” More importantly, he says Windows Phone is finding its own niche. In a world dominated by the iOS-Android duopoly, to find market space is a challenge.
Microsoft To Bring Outlook To iOS (Apple Insider)
rumour has it at the end of October, Microsoft plans to release two new native iOS applications on the App Store featuring the Metro user interface: Outlook Web App and an updated mobile version of the Lync communications platform. Both will be native iOS applications that render Web content with the same tiled Metro user interface style that can be found on Windows Phone. The Outlook Web App will reportedly be compatible with devices running iOS 5 or later. It was said that it will also require an Exchange 2012 mailbox to work, and will offer users offline functionality. This also echos rumours that the entire Office Suite is coming to iOS. If you can’t beat them, join them.
MSN Looking To Deepen Presence In China With Bing (Marbridge Daily)
Liu Zhenyu, general manager of MSN China, announced that MSN China is planning a move into the e-commerce market that will coincide with the end of beta testing for the company’s Bing search engine and an expanded push into the competitive Chinese search market. MSN currently has 50 to 60 million active monthly users in China, and will move to further integrate its services with the Windows Phone platform in the future. Liu said that MSN China’s business plans centre around three drivers of growth. The first of these, Liu said, will be the use of advertising to drive business growth; the second will be paid services; the third will be e-commerce.