The Greater Sum
Over the past decade, the world we live in has been transformed by the Web. It connects us to nearly everything we do. It makes the real world smaller, more relevant, more digestible and more personal. At the same time, the PC has grown geometrically in power, becoming more and more capable every day. What were documents and spreadsheets then are now digital photos, videos, music and movies. And as we edit, organize and store media, the PC has quietly moved from our desks to our laps to our mobile phones and entertainment centers – taking the Web with it each step of the way.
Software + Services represent an industry shift towards a design approach that is neither exclusively software-centric nor browser-centric. By deeply and genuinely combining the best aspects of software with the best aspects of cloud-based services, we can deliver more compelling solutions for consumers, developers and businesses. Microsoft envisions a world where rich, highly functional and elegant experiences extend from the PC, to the Web, to all the devices people use every day. Across the industry, Software + Services is growing as a model strategy – as evidenced by the emergence of hybrid scenarios on PCs, mobile phones and other devices that meld services and software together.
Microsoft's investments in Software + Services are framed by three core principles.
Firstly, experiences should span beyond a single device. In a world where practically any device can become smart and connected, choice in any device can become smart and connected, choice in
"When you combine the ever-growing power of devices and the increasing ubiquity of the Web, you come up with a sum that is greater than its parts."
the right computing power in the right place at the right time is paramount. User experiences that span seamlessly from the browser, to the PC, to the mobile and console need to be brought together to provide flexible yet unified experiences.
Secondly, infrastructure and solutions should extend from the server to the cloud. Cloud services developed hand-in-hand with server counterparts will deliver much-needed choice to enterprise customers – enabling flexibility in developing, scaling, operating and migrating systems that are distributed between the cloud and the enterprise datacenter.
And lastly, tightly coupled system should give way to federations of cooperating systems and loosely coupled compositions. With the right transparency, standards and
interoperability, these small pieces of code loosely joined help developers build new applications and services out of base components—enabling agile and cost-effective development.
Microsoft has vibrant businesses on the desktop and in the enterprise, and is making sizable investments in online services and devices. As these four worlds converge, no technology vendor is better positioned to deliver on the vision of Software-plus-Services. Microsoft has multiple ways to monetize the results through the familiar model of software licensing, offering services by subscriptions, leveraging Microsoft's industry-leading advertising platform or the growing form of micro-payments known as Microsoft Points. And, Microsoft has the world’s largest and most diverse partner ecosystem, which is committed to its role in our strategy.