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Perspective: Microsoft hedges on Office for iPad, cites 'thoughtful' decisions

Gregg Keizer | Feb. 17, 2014
Company's top marketing exec talks up Office's power to make Windows special

Reller also echoed the "cloud-first, mobile-first" and "software powered" phrases that Nadella used in a staged interview on the Microsoft's campus the day he was appointed CEO.

"It's now about execution," said Reller. "Sure, there are some strategic elements that need refinement, no doubt about it. [But] it's now about mobilizing. That's something that Satya [Nadella] does particularly well. He has the ability to mobilize teams to just get after it."

Later, near the end of her time on stage, Reller hit on that one more time. "But this [devices and services] is a big strategy, right? There are elements of it that need to be really codified and taken forward and now fully executed upon."

Reller also touted a new sales figure for the struggling Windows 8, which, she said, has passed the 200 million licenses mark, a number that included those bought by consumers as upgrades and by OEMs for use on new machines.

It was the first milestone mentioned by Microsoft since May 2013, when the company said it had sold 100 million.

Windows 7 broke the 240-million mark 12 months after an October 2009 launch, but its successor has lagged behind, dogged by slumping PC sales, customer apathy or outright antagonism, and an inability to gain meaningful share in tablets.

According to Web metrics company Net Applications, Windows 8's user share in January was less than half that of Windows 7 at the same point in its post-launch timetable.

"With Windows 8 we've been very thoughtful about what's going well, what's not going well, and how we change that," said Reller.

There's thoughtful again.


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