The PC era ends with MS as a gaming company?

This:

Microsoft Sold 8 Million Kinects in 60 Days
[Via Daring Fireball]

Very impressive. Seems like Xbox has taken a decided lead over PS3. But announcing this makes it all the more glaring that they still haven’t released any sales numbers for Windows Phone 7.

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Coupled with this:

Microsoft’s Tablet Strategy

[Via Daring Fireball]

Matt Rosoff:

Earlier today, computer maker Asus kicked off the Consumer Electronics Show a day early by announcing four upcoming tablet computers. Three of them run Google’s Android operating system. One runs Windows 7. See if you can guess which one is the outlier:

  • Eee Pad MeMO: starts at $499
  • Eee Pad Slider: starts at $499
  • Eee Pad Transformer: starts at $399
  • Eee Slate: starts at $999

I get the feeling Microsoft knows they have a big problem here. They need to shut up, get to work, and build a real tablet OS — and they know it. The problem is they can’t completely shut up. The iPad is too big a sensation, and is attracting a bunch of competitors, almost none of which are using a Microsoft OS. But they were way more blustery about “slates” at last year’s CES than they were at this year’s.

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Leads to this:

Horace Dediu on the Real News From CES
[Via Daring Fireball]

Horace Dediu:

At this year’s CES two unthinkable things happened:

  1. The abandonment of Windows exclusivity by practically all of Microsoft’s OEM customers.
  2. The abandonment of Intel exclusivity by Microsoft for the next generation of Windows.

Many of Microsoft’s customers chose to use an OS product from Microsoft’s arch enemy. Some chose to roll their own. Microsoft, in turn, chose to port its OS to an architecture from Intel’s arch enemy.

These actions confirm the end of the PC era.

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They are doing great in the video game hardware/software side of things but no word on how their phone is doing. Their tablet strategy is not competitive. The exclusivity of the PC era – which provided them much of their profits – is at an end.

What happens when the new environment and innovation that will come from the various app stores destroys their Office dominance?

Seems like the only thing they have that people want are Xboxes, kinect and ancillary software. But about 90% of Microsoft’s revenues come from other areas.

I wonder what Ballmer is going to do about it?

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