What Is Microsoft?
When we talk about companies that have been ruling the tech industry in the United States and worldwide, it’s necessary to mention Microsoft in it.
Microsoft is the short form for the words ‘Micro-computer’ and ‘Software,’ implying that it’s much more than a software company. The largest software company in the world produces various devices that have contributed to its popularity and revenue.
As of 2020, Microsoft generated total revenue of $37.2 billion as it provides multiple services ranging from MS Office to Xbox. Moreover, Microsoft has even dethroned Apple as the most valuable publicly traded company in the world.
Beginning Of Microsoft
Microsoft officially came into the business in the April of 1975 as a software company made by two friends: Bill Gates and Paul Allen.
The two friends first created a BASIC interpreter for the MITS 8800 microcomputer after coming across it in a magazine. MITS was so impressed by their interpreter that the company agreed to sell it under ‘Altair BASIC’ in March 1975.
The success of Altair BASIC prompted the friends to create a separate software company, which we now know as Microsoft. The company entered the Operating System (OS) sector of the tech world in 1980 and became the top computer operating system distributor.
However, the popularity and success of Microsoft are attributed to the creation of the Windows operating system in 1985.
Ever since the creation of Windows, Microsoft has been expanding its business by introducing various software, services, and hardware such as Microsoft Office, Xbox, and Microsoft Surface.
What Does Microsoft Offer?
The success of Microsoft is not limited to Windows alone. The following are Microsoft’s central services, software, and devices, allowing you to find everything ranging from organization tools to gaming consoles under a single name: Microsoft.
1. Microsoft Windows
We all have worked on Windows at least once at some point of time in our lives. The great graphic user interface and the multitasking features from IBM made the operating system a hit as soon as it was released.
The revenue generated by Windows commercial products and cloud services contributes 13% of Microsoft’s revenue.
Xbox was the first gaming console launched by Microsoft in the year 2001. However, it was discontinued after facing neck-to-neck competition from PlayStation by Sony. As a comeback, Xbox 360 gaming console was launched in 2005.
The Xbox 360 Smart Glass allows you to connect your phone with your Xbox console. In addition to it, Microsoft has also developed Xbox Kinect through which you can give voice and gestural commands to your Xbox and television.
All these devices and features provided by various Xbox products resulted in Microsoft enticing Gamers and increasing its revenue by 30% in 2020 alone.
3. Microsoft Office
Microsoft Office is a set of various desktop software: Word, Excel, PowerPoint, SharePoint, Publisher, Project, Outlook, OneNote, Access, and Teams by Microsoft.
You can easily create your data in the form of a word document, spreadsheet, presentation and store it with the help of Microsoft Office. Microsoft Office is one of those tools that would help you stay organized and, at the same time, allow you to connect with multiple people at once.
The use of Microsoft Office for education purposes and its compatibility with Android, Mac, Windows 10, iPhone, and iPad, made it one of the most used features of Microsoft.
4. Bing Search Engine
Have you ever wondered how you can use the various features such as Images, Maps, News, Places, Translator, Video, and Webmaster provided by the Bing search engine free of cost?
Bing doesn’t charge you a single dollar because it uses Bing Ads, a pay-per-click advertising network developed by Microsoft. Bing generates its revenue by displaying multiple advertisements as per its target audience.
In addition to the various applications mentioned above, Microsoft provides multiple other features and applications. Some of the most popular ones are mentioned below.
- Microsoft Defender Antivirus: It’s also known as Windows Defender as it would provide your software real-time protection against viruses, malware, and spyware. Being a security application, many people are compelled to buy this, which adds to Microsoft’s revenue.
- Cortana: To make sure that you don’t face any trouble while using Microsoft devices and applications, Microsoft created Cortana, a personal assistant, for you.
- Outlook: Outlook is an email and calendar service provided by Microsoft that would help you immensely in staying organized. You can use Mail, Calendar, People, and Tasks under Outlook.
- Yammer: Yammer was created as a social networking service to provide a personal communication tool for organizations.
You can’t use any software or application if you don’t have a suitable device or hardware. Therefore, Microsoft has launched an array of devices that are compatible with the applications mentioned above.
- Microsoft Surface Book provides the performance of a laptop, tablet, and portable studio
- Microsoft Surface is a tablet that can easily replace your laptop
- Microsoft Surface Duo is a dual-screen mobile on which you can use Microsoft 365 apps
- Microsoft Surface Go 2 is the smallest Surface two-in-laptop with a touchscreen
The creation of these devices contributes almost 35% to Microsoft’s revenue. This is because if you wish to use the amazing applications provided by Microsoft to the full extent, you’ll be required to purchase at least one of the devices mentioned above.
Acquisitions Done By Microsoft
In addition to the various services and devices launched and maintained by Microsoft, one of the primary reasons behind their successful business is the multiple acquisitions done by them.
Microsoft has acquired various companies and services to expand its business across multiple domains. In 2008, Microsoft acquired Danger Inc. and launched the Microsoft Surface range of devices.
In 2011, Microsoft acquired Skype Technologies for $8.5 million, making it their second-largest acquisition. The largest acquisition by Microsoft was that of LinkedIn in 2011 for $26.2 million! The costly buyout was totally worth it as LinkedIn increased Microsoft’s revenue by 16% in 2020.
Microsoft might have started as a hardware distributor, but the development of Windows and various services and acquisitions were made by the company, making it the leading software company.
There is much more to Microsoft than the applications and devices mentioned above. The company provides a range of applications for every purpose ranging from school and offices to entertainment.