“Microsoft today, I think, is a case study in knowing when you should indeed give up, and what you should do after that,” Benedict Evans blogs. “As (hopefully) we all now understand, mobile is replacing the PC as the dominant computing platform. Smartphones sell in much larger numbers, have a much larger user base and are already close to taking a larger share of internet use than the PC in leading markets (such as the USA and UK). PCs aren’t going away any time soon, any more than faxes or mainframes did, but they are the past, not the future.”

“Since Microsoft’s mobile operating systems have failed to achieve meaningful market share, Microsoft has hence gone from dominating sales of personal computing devices to powering less than a fifth,” Evans writes. “Microsoft has missed mobile. Consumer PCs, slowly, will be a shrinking platform. Meanwhile weakness in mobile also bleeds back to the desktop and undermines Office. The shift away from the PC will be slower in the enterprise than in consumer internet, and so will the rise of alternative software models…. The rise of SaaS services and new productivity models on one hand and more and more capable mobile devices on the other means that Office, and hence desktop Windows in the enterprise, is also probably a declining model.”

“This brings us to capitulation,” Evans writes. “Enterprise platforms and productivity are going to change fundamentally, and that in turn will enable and feed off a shift away from PCs. Sharing document files (or copying them as web apps) is not the future – rather, the connective tissue of work needs to be rebuilt. By someone. I don’t have a complete sense of what that looks like, but admitting defeat is the first step to working it out.”

Much more, with graphs, in the full article – recommended – here.

MacDailyNews Take: Perhaps they could go into vacuum cleaners? You know, put to good use all of that experience of sucking. Nah, that won’t work, either:

Earth to Ballmer: you suck, your company sucks, and your company’s products suck; with one exception, of course: if you ever decide to make vacuum cleaners. And we wouldn’t put that one past you, either, you stunning epitome of mismanagement, you.MacDailyNews Take, February 28, 2009

SEE ALSO:
Beleaguered Microsoft’s Windows 9… er, ’10’ is more like Apple’s OS X than ever before – July 29, 2015
Apple’s Mac sales have risen and iPad sales have now declined for six consecutive quarters – July 28, 2015
Beleaguered Microsoft’s Windows 9… er, ’10’ won’t save the struggling Windows PC industry – July 27, 2015
Press section at the Windows 10 event also looks like an Apple ad – January 22, 2015
Apple’s Mac demand might be even better than soaring sales numbers suggest – July 27, 2015
Apple Macs and iOS devices now outselling Windows PCs annually – July 23, 2015
Apple Macs gain even more share against Microsoft Windows PCs – July 23, 2015
IBM ends workers’ Windows PC hell, offers employees Apple Macs for the first time – May 28, 2015
Apple kills the Windows PC and no one seems to mind – April 30, 2014
Milestone: Apple computers outsold Windows PCs in Q4 2013 – February 12, 2014