Jan 282017
 

Earlier this decade it looked like Microsoft’s most profitable business line was doomed as Google Docs threatened to disrupt the Office franchise.

Yesterday Microsoft showed how they had seen off that threat when reporting their second-quarter results that beat Wall Street analysts’ estimates and saw the company’s stock market capitalisation topped $500bn, the first time since the year 2000.

Microsoft’s results were mainly due to its  cloud computing products with Azure growing at 93% year on year, Office 365 commercial at 47% and Office Consumer Products and Cloud Services at 22%.

Earlier in the week, cloud security company Okta released its Business at Work study that looked at trends in the commercial use of online services which showed how Microsoft’s products are dominating the market.

Microsoft’s advantage was underscored in a Gartner paper late last year. The Current State of Cloud Office and What to Do About It report found 10.7 percent of public listed companies surveyed were using Office 365 as opposed to 5.2% using Google. The rest had deployed hybrid or on-premise productivity suites.
So Microsoft seemed to have seen off the biggest threat to one of their most important products which for Alphabet/Google should be a worrying development as G-Suite (as it’s now called) has failed to become a meaningful revenue centre – advertising profits still made up 22 billion of the company’s $25 billion revenues in their last results.
Google’s failure to diversify should worry Alphabet investors, particularly given the headstart the company had over Microsoft Office in the early days of G-suite as then Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer struggled to shift the company’s key product lines onto the cloud.
How much the initiatives of G-Suite’s new leader Diane Green can go in making Google’s product more attractive is a big question as Microsoft have shown they can match or beat their competitors’ offerings in areas like collaboration and artificial intelligence.

Despite Microsoft’s success in seeing off Google in the office productivity market the company still lags Alphabet market capitalisation of $570 billion but Microsoft have show they are far from a spent force in the software industry.

  One Response to “Microsoft sees off the Google threat”

  1. At a previous client, we did a compare and contrast between Google and Microsoft’s cloud office offerings. Microsoft won hands down on capability. They both have a lot of leeway in pricing so choose the winner on functionality and ease of implementation then negotiate the price as if you haven’t decided.

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