Is Windows Microsoft’s biggest strength or a weakness going forward?

Microsoft’s Steve Ballmer stressed some weeks ago that Windows is “the backbone product of Microsoft” now and into the future: “Windows PCs, Windows Phones, Windows slates…” What do you think? Is Windows Microsoft’s biggest strength or a weakness going forward?

When IBM was still working with technology and marketing mainframe solutions, they almost missed the boat entirely as computers got smaller and more powerful. Microsoft’s value proposition is wrapped up in their operating system and their market share, so much so they’ve put it on everything. Once someone can topple their 95% ownership of the market, they’ll need to do something else. Since they seem to know that, they’re doing everything they can to protect it.

Eggs all in one basket? Probably. But it’s a lot of eggs and a huge basket. In fact, it’s monopoly. It doesn’t matter. They can do, or not do, whatever they want. If 1/2 the world stop using Windows tomorrow, they’d still be the biggest software co and biggest software product in the world. 4 or 5 times over all the other competitors combined, that is a winning business and product.

Like it or not, the Microsoft Windows platform still dominates desktops around the world. As do its Office products like Word, Excel and PowerPoint. There may be much better, more elegant, more efficient products out there. But most of us still rely on some version of the Windows OS and its Office suite to run our businesses. So yes, Windows is strength for Microsoft, despite its flaws, because we are all so familiar with the way it looks and works.