Not Windows. Not Office. Microsoft.
Think about that.
The iPhone did not exist five years ago. And now it’s bigger than a company that, 15 years ago, was dragged into court and threatened with forcible break-up because it had amassed an unassailable and unthinkably profitable monopoly.
The iPhone also appears to be considerably more profitable than Microsoft.
In the December quarter, Apple’s iPhone business generated $24.4 billion of revenue. Microsoft’s whole company, meanwhile, from Windows to Office to servers to XBox, generated $20.9 billion.
If we assume that Apple generates the same operating profit margin on its iPhone business that it generates on its overall business–38%–the iPhone business generated about $9.3 billion of profit in the December quarter.
All of Microsoft, meanwhile, generated only $8.2 billion.
It was not long ago that Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer was fending off those observing that Apple’s market capitalization was closing in on Microsoft’s by saying that, regardless of market cap, Microsoft’s business was much bigger and more profitable.
Now, Apple’s business (in Q4) is more than twice the size of Microsoft’s–$46 billion to $21 billion–and more than twice as profitable: $17 billion to $8 billion.
And, needless to say, Apple’s market cap now dwarfs Microsoft’s. (Although, interestingly, Apple’s market cap is not yet 2X Microsoft’s, despite the difference in revenue, profitability, and growth rates. The market still appears to be concerned that Apple’s “closed system” is vulnerable to the same sort of disruption by Android and other more open systems that Apple’s Mac business was back in the 1990s).
What’s just as remarkable here is that Apple invented the iPhone business out of thin air in 2007. This is not an old product category. It’s a completely new one. Which means that Microsoft or anyone else could have invented it.
(The same can be said for the more recently introduced iPad, which is now cleaning Microsoft’s clock in that category, too.)
For the first decade of Steve Ballmer’s reign at Microsoft, some folks cut him a break for the company’s stagnant stock price by observing that the market had changed. But the market changed for Apple, too, and Apple innovated two huge new product lines, one of which is now bigger and more profitable than Microsoft’s entire business. So Steve can’t be cut a break for that anymore.
Microsoft just plain missed these markets (iPhone and iPad). And Apple created them. And it turns out that, at least for now, they are much more valuable and lucrative markets than the ones Microsoft dominated.
The other mistake Microsoft made, one that ultimately could be far more devastating, is that it became obsessed with the wrong competitor.
For the past decade, Microsoft has obsessively targeted Google as Enemy No. 1, blowing more than $10 billion trying to compete with Google’s amazing search engine.
Microsoft has made some progress, but not much–and it is still losing $2 billion a year on the effort. And, meanwhile, a once-forgotten company has blown past it in business lines that much closer and more threatening to Microsoft’s core businesses–Apple.
Microsoft still has a strong hold on the enterprise market, and it may now be able to rededicate itself to that market and try to withstand the Apple and Google onslaught.
But regardless of what happens, Microsoft can only now look up in awe and realize that a product that was introduced 5 years ago and that Steve Ballmer famously dissed is now larger and more profitable than Microsoft’s whole company.
As promised, Microsoft’s Kinect for Windows has launched on 1st of February 2012, bundling together a Kinect unit and a commercial license for the hardware. Microsoft is heavily pitching the bundle squarely toward industries outside video games, suggesting that Kinect should move “beyond the living room into other industries such as education, manufacturing, healthcare, and retail.”
As part of this new push, Microsoft is encouraging businesses to take part in the Kinect Accelerator program, which offers the chance for startups to receive funding for innovative Kinect projects.
The Kinect for Windows package retails for $249. The hardware features “advanced speech and audio capabilities” as well as “improved skeletal tracking that enables control over which user is being tracked by the sensor.” The unit also features “near mode” which recognizes objects “as close as 40 centimeters in front of the sensor.”
Will these improvements be implemented in the console hardware? Is it even possible? We’re looking into it.
What you need The new Metro dashboard, a Gold account, and a broadband internet connection.
Microsoft TMG (Threat Management Gateway) 2010 is basically the latest version of it’s elder brother Microsoft ISA.
The product is much better than it’s earlier release especially after releasing service pack 2, which gave it much more utilities and power.
Today we will be guiding you through utilizing the product to be able to block Uploading files to different sites, and especially to Webmail sites.
We will keep posting about other tweaks for this product in the following weeks.
Blocking Uploads on TMG
Since it’s not a straight forward process we will be guiding you through the steps:
1- Go to Forefront TMG Management
2- From the left menu choose Web Access Policy as shown below:
3- Once clicked on Web Access Policy, on the right hand side make sure that HTTPS Inspection is Enabled as shown below:
4- Now, first we will start the blocking of uploads for all sites. Go to the Allow Web Access for All Users as shown below:
5- Right click on the Web Access Rule and choose HTTP Filtering as shown below:
6- In General make sure that Allow any payload length is checked:
7- Go to Signatures and click on Add.
8- When the Dialog box is opened fill the following fields,
Name: You can add anything, let’s say we will call it Block Uploads
Search in: Request headers
HTTP Header: Content-Type:
9- Click on OK once finished.
10- Now this should be blocking uploads for all websites, unless you are facing problems with Hotmail, then you need to do the following:
10.a.: Go to Signatures again and click Add.
10.b.: When the Dialog box is opened fill the following fields,
Name: You can add anything, let’s say we will call it Block Hotmail Attachment
Search in: Request URL
10.c: Click on OK once finished.
10.d: Go to Signatures again and click Add
10.e.: When the Dialog box is opened fill the following fields,
Name: You can add anything, let’s say we will call it Block Hotmail SilverLight
Search in: Request URL
Now you are ready to start annoying the employees in your company
This will be just the start with TMG, and later on we will be posting about more features soon.
The most played Xbox 360 game of 2011 will surprise absolutely no one. Neither will the second or the third, for that matter.
The list, released on Major Nelson’s blog today, covers the top twenty games played by Xbox Live users (Silver and Gold) during 2011. These numbers are based on unique users, rather than total accumulated playtime, otherwise I suspectthat game with the dragons and the arrows might have ranked a little higher.
Call of Duty dominates the top of the chart with its three most-recent installments. Halo: Reach, Battlefield 3 and Skyrim ranked fourth, fifth and sixth respectively. The two latest FIFA games outdid Madden by a hair, so Europeans can get their smug on, should they so wish.
The list in full:
- Call of Duty: Black Ops
- Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3
- Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2
- Halo: Reach
- Battlefield 3
- Gears of War 3
- FIFA 12
- FIFA Soccer 11
- Madden NFL 12
- GTA IV
- NBA 2K11
- Battlefield: Bad Co. 2
- Call of Duty 4
- Battlefield 3 Beta
- Halo 3
- Gears of War 2
- Forza Motorsport 4
- Red Dead Redemption
- Call of Duty: World at War
According to the other lists on the blog, Pinball FX2, Full House Poker and the, seemingly immortal, Castle Crashers were the best selling Arcade games, while a pair of shameless Minecraft knock-offs took first and second place in the indie rankings.
It looks like Microsoft has not held back with its official Lync App for Lync Mobile for iPhone and iPad: This app apears to be the best yet with some features even the Windows Phone version does not have.
Some of the features I’ve noticed are unique to Lync for iOS:
- Visual Voicemail and ability to 1 click call back callers
- Most Developed Keypad: with dial tone feedback, visual notices
- Tab showing Meetings and Online Meetings that can be Joined
- Ability to select All and multi-select chats to be Deleted in the Chats windows
- iOS Native Contacts are integrated into the Lync experience
- Ability to Send Location in a IM/Chat
Some other small things I’ve noticed
- iPad version does not have keypad for dialing. iPhone version has nice keypad dialing experience
- The IM notification sound on iOS sounds just like the desktop Lync making the experience seem more similar
My Info Tab
This screen allows you to change your note, status, options and Simultaneous Ring settings.
Easily set your status/presence.
Lync and iPhone/iPad native Contacts are integrated into the experience. You can search for contacts directly from this same screen as well.
This is the window to see ongoing chats and move between them.
Below is the IM chat window. Pressing the upper right options” button allow you to take actions on this IM like: Invite more people to this chat, Voice call this contact, send Location and more.
Location: When you are in an IM chat Window you can easily send your location.
If you have meetings scheduled they will appear in this window. With 1 click you can see the details or join them.
Meeting details and join.
The Lync for iPhone dialing keypad feels a lot like a mobile phone dial pad. (In contrast to the Lync for Windows Phone where the dialer is a text field you type in.) You can press and hold 1 to access the Exchange UM voicemail system. You can also copy number into the keypad dialer.
Visual Voicemail on the Lync for iOS clients gives the ability to instantly select the voicemail that is of interest to you. You can listen to a voice and delete or callback the caller. You can start listening or move part way into the voicemail using the progress slider.
Visual voicemail notification
The Lync Mobile for iPhone and iPad appears to be the most full featured and refined Lync Mobile client from Microsoft yet.
Some items that are missing are calling history list (missed, dialed, completed) and conversation history is not automatically saved to Exchange list on Lync Desktop. (you can Send as an email) As with all the Lync Mobile clients, VoIP, video and meeting visuals are not included.
Microsoft has put a lot of thought into fit and finish. With features like Visual Voicemail and the more complete keypad dialing (on iPhone) and small things like very snappy feel/transitions and using the Lync desktop ring tone, the iOS client feels more like the desktop Lync experience than the earlier released Windows Phone and Android Lync Mobile clients.
checkout this video about Lync:
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