Microsoft’s hardware has been, to be honest, very under-appreciated. From its Surface tablet-hybrids to the Lumia handsets, the hardware line for the software giant has been truly a downhill ride. But then, Microsoft’s own policies over the years are to be blamed for the disaster that hardware has been for the company.
But as has been the case ever since Nadella took over reigns from Ballmer, we might see a resurgent Microsoft in this arena too. The Redmond giant seems to not be letting the hardware ghost get to them yet.
In the wake of recent activity from Microsoft (in its worldwide partner conference), we can conclude (quite easily, if we may) that the company is trying to get its hardware services back into the market, though with a mroe cautious approach this time.
You must be wondering what the hell am I talking about specifically considring Nadella’s recent lay-off plans and writing down of the $7.6 Billion Nokia acquisition. While its true that Nokia was indeed a waste-of-money deal (like may pf Microsoft’s previous deals), the company has given some pretty clear indications on how it still hasn’t given up on hardware.
There are three recent activities of the company which point towards this:
- Microsoft saying this morning that Lumia handsets running Windows 10 are coming.
- The firm is expanding sales channels for its Surface line of tablet-hybrids.
- The company is ramping production of its Surface Hub wall computers.
Let’s break the magician’s code then, shall we?
To begin with, at Microsoft’s Partner conference (which is still under way) Terry Myerson said:
Last week we announced a focusing on our Lumia lineup, but let me be clear: soon you will see premium new Lumias designed for Windows 10.
That’s quite straightforward, isn’t it? No explanation needed.
But the thing is Microsoft is stuck with the Lumia line, they like it or not as currently, they are the only major manufacturers to be producing the Windows based smartphones and until they find a partner to work on their smartphones with, they can’t let go of this Nokia induced fever they have gotten, unless they are willing to extinguish the Windows based phones completely. Conclusive line: Microsoft based phones are on life support.
Moving on, here’s something Mary Jo Foley had to say:
Microsoft will expand its current list of a “couple hundred” authorized Surface device distributors to a few thousand worldwide […] Any partner can sign up for the expanded Surface distribution program, though each distributor will have qualifications based on volume.
So, the Surface Pro 4 will be sold throughout the planet no matter what people are presuming ( and how badly its previous brethren performed in the market). Microsoft is still searching for partners for this task, though.
And finally, the all important Surface Hub, (probably?) the only Microsoft hardware device that is selling well. This stuck-on-a-wall tablet was seriously received well by consumers. Paul Thurrott says:
Microsoft says that demand [for the Surface Hub] is such that it will now increase manufacturing capacity in order to make more units available for launch.
Are we forgetting something?
The Xbox, you say. Guess that one device comes in an entirely different category. If Microsoft even hints at giving that up, I think I will give up living as well my gaming-kind.