Microsoft's Balmer Finally Getting the Message (MSFT)

Jul.13.06 | About: Microsoft Corporation (MSFT)

We have written about Microsoft’s need to make sure that the Vista version of Windows gets done right. We have talked about Microsoft’s need to become more nimble. We have talked about things in between.

It seems that Microsoft’s CEO, Steve Balmer, is finally getting the same message. Reuters reports that

Microsoft Corp. (MSFT.O: Quote, Profile, Research) Chief Executive Steve Ballmer pledged on Tuesday to never again wait so long between releases of its Windows operating system.

The next version of Windows, called Vista, will be the operating system’s first major overhaul in five years. Windows sits on 90 percent of the world’s computers and accounts for nearly a third of Microsoft’s total revenue.

Microsoft’s plans to release Windows Vista to business customers in November before a wider, general release in January, but there was still speculation that the release date could change again.

Microsoft had targeted a 2005 launch for Windows Vista, than pushed it to 2006. The company said in March that Vista would again be delayed for improvements.

Ballmer, speaking to business partners and clients at Microsoft’s Worldwide Partner Conference in Boston, called the upgrade to Windows XP a blockbuster product for the software company and added: “We’ll never have a gap between Windows releases as long as the one between XP and Vista.”

They’d better not, or their nimbler competitors may just leave them in the dust.

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MSFT 1-yr chart