You got to give him credit for optimism – Ballmer also thinks Nokia and Research In Motion will feel the crunch in the next five years, saying all three companies will suffer because they design their own proprietary hardware which they tie to their software. He reckons Windows Mobile is the ring to rule them all, or something (is that from the wrong movie?)
Ballmer thinks the same strategy that helped Microsoft become the leader on the desktop will let it win out on smartphones. Long term, he said, the battle will be between the Symbian OS, mobile versions of Linux and Windows Mobile. We don’t think so….but he’s the boss of the world’s largest software company, so he gets to say what he wants, we suppose – even when it flies in the face of the evidence.
Take his next point – that Apple won’t boost its slice of the PC market in the consumer or the enterprise space because it won’t license its software to other PC manufacturers. We say that other than to point to endless surveys and oodles of analyst reports which show Apple to be expanding its slice of the PC market in both, erm, the enterprise and consumer markets, Ballmer has probably just offered Apple an alternative strategy should its continued market growth grind to a halt.
Oh, but Ballmer’s equivocal…"Apple’s a good company, I won’t take anything away from them, but they have a certain kind of strategy. They believe in putting the hardware and software together, they don’t believe in letting other people make it."
And it gets better, "I’m not saying there isn’t a threat" from Apple, he said. But if Microsoft and its PC partners "do our jobs right, there’s really no reason Apple should get any footprint in the enterprise."
Oh yeah, Microsoft also committed to a five year strategy to "reinvent search" in its attempt to compete with Google. Sure…
Via: Industry Standard