If you were Microsoft's new CEO, what would you do?


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+warwagon

Give the managers responsible for all the changes in Windows 8.1 Update 1 a raise

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+Asmodai

The problem is that Intel and Microsoft have always been in love. ARM is that low budget chick that is pleasing but at the end of the day, is just lazy.

Microsoft has historically been willing to make (NT based) Windows for other platforms. Windows NT 3.1 was released for Intel x86 PC compatible, DEC Alpha, and ARC-compliant MIPS platforms. Windows NT 3.51 added support for the PowerPC processor in 1995. Alpha, MIPS, and PowerPC continued to be supported through NT4. MIPS and PowerPC support was dropped with Windows 2000 but those platforms had largely been supplanted by then by x86 PCs by then. Alpha support continued until Compaq bought DEC when Win2k was almost done but was never released to the public (due to Compaq dropping support, not MS). In fact I believe it was Dave Cutler that insisted in order the "keep them honest" about multi-platform support for the OS the original version of NT was actually developed on MIPS first then ported to x86 and along the same lines when NT went 64bit Alpha was the primary development platform not Intel. (although that's also because Itanium wasn't ready yet when 64bit work began). MS even allowed other companies to port NT to their servers. Intergraph Corporation ported Windows NT to its Clipper architecture and later announced intention to port Windows NT 3.51 to Sun Microsystems' SPARC architecture, but neither version was sold to the public as a retail product.

ARM is getting more and more intresting but it still has a long way to go (always has)

When ARMv8 comes out it's going to have a presence in the server room. Will a top end ARM CPU beat a top end Intel, of course not but they make for good power/watt CPUs and with 64bit support servers with large numbers of core will do just fine for lower end server work. More importantly though is that companies will be able to make their own custom SoCs with whatever else they want to put on the chips (different I/O controllers, different memory interfaces, different GPUs, etc.) like QualComm does with it's Snapdragon chips, Apple doesn't with it's Ax line, Samsung does with it's Exynos, etc. There is something to be said about being able to develop your own SoC instead of being stuck with what Intel decides to give you. Again though they aren't going to even come close to Intel anytime soon (probably ever) but they'll likely carve a nice little niche out of the server market that MS would be dumb to ignore. For the record I don't think they are though, I do believe that the Windows on ARM already is the product of their work to get the OS ported to the architecture for future Server support (once 64bit ARMv8 silicon becomes widely available). I didn't just make this up myself, I think they're already doing it and I think it's smart and hope they keep at it. (which means continuing Surface development in the short term even though sales are pretty poor).
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McKay

Ensure there are only ever 2 version of Windows (Not including Server). 

 

Home and Business. They'd be on different support life. Home would be supported for 1 year after the next version of Windows has released, Business for 5 years. I'd kill Bing because it's apparently been haemorrhaging money ever since its release, it got grouped into the Xbox Division because Xbox was profitable. 

 

I'd make Microsoft Game Studios into creating a competitive online game that's on XB1 & PS4, which would allow cross platform gameplay between Xbox and Playstation. 

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SpiderNitro

Go on.... What would the redesigning of the Windows line up into a pair of OSes, one for home and One for Business, be called and how would it be executed??

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blerk

Go on.... What would the redesigning of the Windows line up into a pair of OSes, one for home and One for Business, be called and how would it be executed??

If such a thing was to happen, 8.1 I'd have Metro as the default option while 8.1 Professional had desktop as default, in addition to all the current differentiators it currently has (more workspace, administrative features, etc). 

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NightScreams

Better yet, just install classic shell, and carry on. It'll take less energy than to constantly complain on an Internet forums because Big Bad Microsoft made something you don't like. Of course, just clicking on the desktop tile, then setting the desktop as the default boot would take even less time than installing Classic Shell, but who am I to judge...

 

Is that what you would do as CEO, install ClassicShell into Windows? I foresee lawsuits. The thread is about being CEO of MS, not advising users what to do with a new OS.

 

 

What would I do?

 

Keep working on Windows on ARM with the intent of providing future Windows Server versions for 64bit ARM based servers.  In the short term though this means keep supporting Surface as essentially a beta test for Windows on ARM (remove the desktop from the next version of surface tablets).  Work on making Windows Phone become this so eventually Windows Phones and Surface devices run the same OS... in fact they'd both be ARM versions of the same OS that runs on x86-64 PCs.  One OS to rule them all (with different UIs depending on the device capabilities on which it is installed)

 

Make a unified touch centric API for devices from Windows Phone to tablets to the Desktop.  Try to make it as compatible as possible with the APIs it replaces (Windows Phone, Metro, etc.) but have one API and one common store (with smart filters based on device capabilities).  Expose this API for any developer to use on a desktop machine.  So developers can create and distribute apps on their own if they CHOOSE to, including internal apps without needing the Windows Store.

 

Spin off most hardware. (Surface, Surface Pro, Nokia Phones, etc.) and go back to licensing software and selling services mostly. (keep mouse, keyboard, controller, Xbox, etc.)

 

Make an Xbox One version without the Kinect and add a flag a developer to set when a game launches to recover the 10% reserved for it.  So games who don't want to use Kinect can ask the OS for those resources back but those that do want Kinect (and games from before the flag) still have it.  Reduce the price of this version to match the PS4.

 

Make iOS and Android versions of Office as feature rich and as quickly as possible.  So there would be 5 versions of Office.  PC (desktop), Mac, Touch (tablet/Windows Phone), iOS (as similar to Touch as possible but using iOS APIs), Android (as similar to Touch as possible but using Android APIs).  Ideally most of the Touch, iOS, and Android code would be in common libraries with just different platform native UI code.

 

Their server and tools and web services are generally moving along pretty darn well so I wouldn't change much except where it intersects with what is above.

 

Not sure what you mean by flag but just include in license contracts that all developers must include kinect support and must pass a separate certification for it...so you don't get half ass jobs. That way you get full support with all games and MS would not have to include the kinect to get developers to make use of it. History shows that add-on's rarely get supported good enough for consumer adoption but since it is a day 1 add-on, they could have forced it's support in contracts like they do with other things. The problem then becomes an issue of wether or not enough consumers will actually purchase a kinect to make it feasible financially to maintain it on store shelves.

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Xenon

Fire the entire advertising marketing teams and agencies. One third of Microsoft's problem is perception. They have the worst commercials.

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