I’m about to make every Apple fan happy as I openly admit of my own free will:
Microsoft Officially Sucks…
I could give you a laundry list of reasons why, and try to dissect and analyze Microsoft’s many historical mistakes and how it has led them to this moment. But it all really comes down to one core value that has carried the corporate giant all these decades. Here it is:
Microsoft tells its customers what they want to buy. You see, most successful businesses listen to their customers and provide the products and services that are in demand. In high school civics class, this was taught as “supply and demand”. However, Microsoft in its perfect corporate evil, engineered a single source product that everyone needed and only they manufactured. It effectively gave them a monopoly. Consequently, they essentially did whatever the Hell they wanted, and we had to accept it. This is how Microsoft grew into a giant and learned to do business.
In recent years, Microsoft has lost significant ground. They are no longer the #1 tech company in the world; that’s now Apple (at least until Samsung mops the floor with them). Microsoft no longer owns the internet, that’s now Google. Now Microsoft’s top selling product is Office, and it’s starting to lose ground to other products, like Google Docs and Open Office. Microsoft’s own business ethic of “do what we want and force the people to buy it” is betraying them.
Microsoft had (past tense) a formula for success. Remember Blackberry? Only a few years ago, every serious professional had one. Now Blackberry is a joke. It happened overnight because they made the same mistake Microsoft is making right now. Informing your customers of what they want instead of actually listening to them is stupid.
My prediction for the future is: Microsoft will eventually get its head out of its ass. Most of the giants do, and they go through these interesting cycles. I know it’s hard to believe as we look at Yahoo, MySpace, Netscape, AOL, and others who have all but failed. Why won’t they just die? Well, I think it’s New Coke.
Remember New Coke? Coca-Cola introduced the bomb in 1985, replacing their very successful flagship product with something that tasted like a bad mix of Pepsi and Dr. Pepper. The public outcry was massive, and it forced Coca-Cola to return to their original formula only 3-months later. But the New Coke formula was sold for 7-years before finally being discontinued. In other words, bad ideas happen, and eventually somebody comes along and slaps the CEO around and gets the company back in the game. It’s happened to Apple before. It’s happening to Microsoft, Yahoo, and Blackberry now. It’s just what happens.
But right now, Microsoft sucks. About that laundry list:
- XBox One: DRM for all your games, can’t sell used games, can’t effectively loan games to friends, requires daily connection to internet (for games), becomes your TV.
- Windows 8: Has no Start menu, turns your computer into an online store that sells garbage.
- Server 2012: The first touchscreen server OS for IT professionals (WTF??)
- Office 365: So awful, the Microsoft sales rep couldn’t get it to work, and neither could I.
- Office 2013: Has typing animation that you can’t turn off and screws with your brain. Looks like Windows 8, acts like it too.
- Surface: Excellent piece of equipment, runs Windows 8 which everyone hates.
- Zune: Tried to be an iPod, failed.
- Kin: Tried to be a mobile phone, epic fail.
- HD-DVD: Failed because Microsoft pushed some proprietary coding language it invented into the mix, which started the whole HD-DVD/Blu-Ray war.