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Microsoft Pri0

Welcome to Microsoft Pri0: That's Microspeak for top priority, and that's the news and observations you'll find here from Seattle Times technology reporter Matt Day.

Category: Enterprise
November 11, 2014 at 10:50 AM

Microsoft taps Skype for business, will replace Lync

Microsoft says its will offer a version of its Skype voice and video chat software for business customers, phasing out its Lync business software in the first half of next year.

This was a long time coming. It was natural to wonder why Microsoft continued to develop its own business-focused communications tool after shelling out $8.5 billion to buy Skype in the first place. Microsoft linked Lync — itself the successor to Microsoft Office Communicator — and Skype functionality last year.


Comments | More in Enterprise, Microsoft, Video | Topics: microsoft, skype

June 18, 2009 at 5:21 PM pitches cloud computing in Microsoft territory was in Seattle on Thursday promoting its cloud-computing product ahead of Microsoft’s anticipated announcements this summer about its competing product Azure. Chief Executive Mark Benioff gave a speech at the Grand Hyatt in downtown Seattle to customers in an event called CloudForce, which is touring the globe. While better known for its Web-based…


Comments | More in Cloud computing, Enterprise, Microsoft, Windows Azure

March 11, 2009 at 6:29 PM

Microsoft cloud services progress report

For a few years now, Microsoft’s mantra has been “software plus services,” the idea that customers can chose how they buy and consume the company’s products. For example, a business may choose whether to buy Exchange for e-mail and run it on its own servers or have Microsoft host Exchange in its data centers and provide it as a service for a per user, per month subscription. For many products, there are also third-party partner companies that offer similar hosting models for Microsoft’s business applications. Last week, I talked with three Microsoft executives about which among these options looks the best to Microsoft from a financial perspective, and how the online businesses are evolving.


Comments | More in Cloud computing, Enterprise, Financial, Online services, Windows Azure

March 2, 2009 at 5:00 AM

Microsoft Online Services expands, adds new package for ‘deskless’ workers

Microsoft continues to build out its online services offering for businesses with an upcoming expansion into Europe and Asia and a new lightweight package for workers who aren’t currently using corporate e-mail and collaboration systems. The company is announcing today that Microsoft Online Services, versions of the company’s lucrative business software for e-mail, collaboration and online meetings, will be available for trial in 19 countries in Europe and Asia, beginning in April.


Comments | More in Enterprise, Online services

February 24, 2009 at 6:15 AM

Microsoft Strategic Update: Ballmer tells Wall Street more dramatic cost cutting would be ‘imprudent’

With Microsoft’s Redmond campus largely emptied out for the winter holidays, CEO Steve Ballmer crunched the numbers on the proper level of spending for his company against the current economic climate, which he has repeatedly referred to as a “reset” rather than just a recession. Ballmer said his own estimates for the weakness and duration of the downturn tend to be more severe than those of other business leaders he meets.

With that in mind, he settled on $27.5 billion of operating expenses — a level the company aims to hold relatively steady through the current fiscal year, which ends June 30, and during its 2010 fiscal year. Ballmer made clear to financial analysts meeting in New York this morning for the company’s annual strategic update that cutting back even more significantly — say to $20 billion — would be “imprudent.”

“I think this is right,” Ballmer said.

That should give some comfort to those wondering if the modest layoffs Microsoft announced last month were the beginning of a more significant reduction. Wall Street analysts and investors are pressuring companies in every industry to continue cutting costs as sales and profits slow dramatically.

The strategic update call just came to an end. Ballmer gave a detailed look at seven major business areas for the company. Check back here later this morning for more details.

Update, 7:50 a.m.: As he told Congressional Democrats earlier this month, Ballmer said Microsoft’s corporate strategists have been evaluating past downturns — particularly those driven by “deleveraging.” The team read company annual reports from 1927 to 1938 to determine who did a good job managing through the Great Depression. “RCA, God rest them in peace, became our role model,” Ballmer said. The company was able to dominate the television business because it continued to invest during bad times, he said.

Then he broke down how Microsoft plans to invest.


Comments | More in Advertising, Apple, Enterprise, Financial, Games & entertainment, Google, Microsoft layoffs, Mobile, Office, Online services, Open source, Search, Server and tools, Steve Ballmer, Strategy, Tech Economy, Windows, Windows 7, Windows Azure, Windows Mobile, Xbox 360, Yahoo acquisition, Zune

December 3, 2008 at 12:51 PM

Microsoft international strategy exec talks economy, netbooks, Windows 7 (beta due early Q1) and Yahoo

Neil Holloway, vice president of business strategy for Microsoft International and a 19-year veteran, gave investors a broad view of the company’s hottest topics at a conference this morning. A Webcast can be found here. What follows is a summary of his main points.

What customers are saying. A few messages are coming through clearly, Holloway said during the Nasdaq OMX Investor Conference. “Help me save money” and “help finance me either as a partner or as an end customer,” he said.


Comments | More in Enterprise, Search, Tech Economy, Windows 7

November 17, 2008 at 8:57 AM

Microsoft Online opens online Exchange, Sharepoint to businesses of all sizes

Microsoft is continuing its services push today, opening a production version of its hosted e-mail and collaboration software, Exchange and SharePoint, to businesses of all sizes. The software, which runs on servers in Microsoft’s huge data centers and is delivered to companies on the Internet, had been in testing since March.


Comments | More in Data centers, Enterprise, Online services

October 3, 2008 at 7:32 AM

Next week: Microsoft business intelligence conference a coming out for DATAllegro

Microsoft will tout its recent buy, DATAllegro, at a business intelligence conference beginning Monday in Seattle.

Microsoft announced the acquisition of the high-end database company in July during its Financial Analyst Meeting. The acquisition was viewed as a broadside on Oracle in the high-end database market. DATAllegro makes a data warehousing appliance, which combines multiple database servers with hardware.


Comments | More in Enterprise, Hardware, Office, Server and tools

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