It's a new fiscal year at Microsoft, and new CEO Satya Nadella is letting his employees and the world know that the times, they are a'changin'.
In an e-mail message to employees, posted on the Microsoft website where all non-Microsoft employees can also read it, Nadella took a shock-and-awe changing of the guard approach to rallying his troops.
All new CEOs like to put their own stamp on a company, and Nadella is no different. In the e-mail he declared that Microsoft is no longer (former CEO) Steve Ballmer's nice little "devices and services" company, but rather now a "productivity and platform" nice little company.
"While the devices and services description was helpful in starting our transformation, we now need to hone in on our unique strategy. At our core, Microsoft is the productivity and platform company for the mobile-first and cloud-first world. We will reinvent productivity to empower every person and every organization on the planet to do more and achieve more," said Nadella.
In other words, MS-DOS is still really, really dead.
By productivity, Nadella is referring to a software-based, rather than a hardware-based approach. In addition to Microsoft Office, which is a prime example of a productivity suite of applications, he is also including cloud software, development tools, even translation software. As for platforms, Nadella is taking a platform-agnostic approach. Microsoft will develop products that will operate on all mobile platforms, not even with a Windows-first policy.
In his e-mail, Nadella provides a rationale for the shift to an Internet- and mobile-first strategy.
"In this new world, there will soon be more than three billion people with Internet-connected devices - from a farmer in a remote part of the world with a smartphone, to a professional power user with multiple devices powered by cloud service-based apps spanning work and life. The combination of many devices and cloud services used for generating and consuming data creates a unique opportunity for us," he said.
Nadella also said that it's time for Microsoft to move away from its founding principle of putting a PC on every desk and in every home. He also claimed that Digital Work and Life Experiences were at the core of their mission, around which Cloud OS and Device OS are placed. He named the company's Azure cloud software and Windows Server as the foundation for their Cloud OS products, and Windows-based phones, tablets, laptops and televisions as part of their Device OS strategy.
Nadella had some kind words for Xbox, stating that "Microsoft will continue to vigorously innovate and delight gamers with Xbox."