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Microsoft slow refocus

https://m.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=127&v=7DbslbKsQSk

After Google this is now Microsoft that tries to wow us with their vision of the future, introducing Surface Hub 2.

Past the obvious elegance and desirability of the product we have to ask if Microsoft will manage to regain its splendor. The strategy is now more and more obvious: if Google, Amazon, Facebook and Apple and first and foremost consumers companies (even some use consumers as products), will Microsoft be able to transform in an ubiquitous business platform?

To the credit of Satya NADELLA they already have started to tune down Windows as a core focus. But this is a slow refocus for now. One should ask if merging with IBM and rapidly adding payment solutions wouldn’t be the next logical step.

Or is it just about selling more Azure cloud solutions and Office 365?

[ Update ] June 4, 2018 - Just a few days after this article, Microsoft announced to have acquired GitHub for a cool $7.5 billion. The refocus might just be acccelerating...
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Real Manifestos

Real Manifesto

In 1962, Avis facing the giant Hertz was steadily moving out of the market. They pushed back and framed real manifestos devoid of corporate jargon:

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Retail needs a digital wake-up call, but not the one you’re thinking about

The digital wake-up call you need is maybe not the one you think. You are understandably worried that you don’t own the platform where your customer experience and your brand are dissected live every second. But what is the option anyway? PR you way back to relevance?

That’s the thing you see. Most companies want to be in charge of the way customers see them, Mad Men-style. But the digital toothpaste has been out of the tube for many years. It’s not going back in. And you’re not going to beat Facebook, Google or Tencent at big data at this point any time soon either. Blaming your IT department because customer service chatbots and in-store augmented reality are the new connected fridges doesn’t help either.

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How to explain your business

Two weeks in Shanghai working with dozens of MBA students holding managerial and executive positions in various industries always ground me back to the basics of business. One of the most basic questioning that managers, innovators, or would-be entrepreneurs are asked is: can you explain your business? The answer is always a mess.

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It’s not about product or service anymore

It’s not about product or service anymore. It never was. Since the beginning of times, every transaction has always been both a product and a service. But you might be confused because finance is still looking hard at Capex versus Opex and that’s fair. Tax people might also still lag behind and account for VAT, investment, and transfer of ownership in different ways, but why would that mean that your customers should care?