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7 Lessons Microsoft Should Take Into 2014

Will Microsoft continue to pursue Apple-like profit margins?

That’s the question Information Week‘s Michael Endler is asking, this week, as the publication highlights 7 important lessons the multinational technology corporation could (and should) learn from, if it wants to secure even more success as we move into 2014.

1. Ballmer Had To Go

“Any additional lessons derived from Ballmer’s departure will become clear in 2014, when the company will announce its next CEO. Will he or she be an insider? Someone with a technical background? Will the next CEO share Ballmer’s desire to reach consumers?”

2. Microsoft Can’t Push Around Partners

“Microsoft also appears to have learned it doesn’t have the leverage it once did. By purchasing Nokia’s device business, the company effectively conceded that OEMs don’t have a reason to license Windows Phone when Android is already available for free.”

3. Microsoft Office Isn’t All-Important

“One important dilemma Microsoft’s next CEO will face is how and when to launch Office for Android and iOS. Ballmer has confirmed that a touch-first version of Office is coming to Windows tablets and other platforms. But will the touch-optimized versions be cheaper (or free) for Windows users?”

4. Small Details Matter

“Microsoft’s Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 haven’t set any sales records, but they’ve been better received than their predecessors. One reason? Microsoft refined a lot of small details.”

5. Consumer Business Must Be Earned

“Microsoft also built a more cohesive network of big-box retailers to complement its fledgling chain of stores. And it’s started airing ads that actually depict people using Windows products, rather than holding them while they jump and stomp.”

6. Rushing to the Future Doesn’t Mean Abandoning the Past

“Microsoft’s Xbox One launch also touched on this lesson. With early sales of more than 2 million units, the device debuted auspiciously, but in previous months, Microsoft went back and forth with gamers — often contentiously.”

7. The Device Business Is Really, Really Hard

“Microsoft has [even] started to get its supply chain and distribution infrastructure in order. The Nokia purchase helps in this regard, but the company has also expanded its Surface line to a growing number of channel partners and united with big-box retailers.”

If you have the time, it’s definitely worth a read.

/ Image Credit: Boy Genius