Joined Nov 11, 2007
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Is $MSFT’s Vision an $AAPL Killer ?

“For the first time in many years, Microsoft has a vision.

In November 2012, CEO Steve Ballmer proclaimed that Microsoft (MSFTFortune 500)is no longer just a software company that licensed its operating system to PC makers to use as they pleased. Instead, Microsoft is now a devices and services company that develops its own end-to-end experience for consumers. Ballmer said Microsoft wants to maintain firm control over how its products are used.

Microsoft provided the first glimpse of how that plan might come together two weeks ago, when it unveiled its new strategy codenamed “Blue.” The company promises to roll out more frequent and more incremental updates of Windows, Windows Phone,Office and Xbox software. More than that, those updates will be coordinated across Microsoft’s multiple platforms, to get all customers’ “devices, apps and services working together.”

Instead of a mishmash of systems out there using outdated Microsoft software with glaring compatibility issues, “Blue” could ensure that Microsoft’s own products evolve at the same rate as the rest of the tech world.

If this is starting to sounds a lot like how Apple (AAPLFortune 500) and Google(GOOGFortune 500) do business, that’s intentional.

But Microsoft’s plan may be even better than anything Apple or Google currently have to offer. If — and it’s still a lofty if — there’s a shred of validity to rumors that Microsoft will merge the Windows and Windows Phone platforms, “Blue” could end up being a huge deal. Dissolving the barrier between mobile and desktop would be nothing short of impressive.

That would mean the main difference between Microsoft’s products would be the size of the hardware they run on. It’s the post-PC concept at its ideal peak….”

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