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Stephen Elop Would Pull a Nokia On Microsoft

Soulskill posted about a year ago | from the preemptive-condolences dept.

Microsoft 292

Nerval's Lobster writes "A new Bloomberg report suggests that Stephen Elop, who's apparently on the short list of candidates to replace Steve Ballmer as Microsoft's CEO, would eliminate company projects such as Xbox and Bing while focusing resources on Office. Before he left Microsoft to join Nokia, Elop headed Microsoft's Business Division, so it's no surprise he'd want to focus on Office and the company's other, highly profitable enterprise software. But as head of Nokia, Elop made similarly bold strategic realignments that, while they probably looked good on paper, didn't quite work out. Specifically, Elop decided to abandon Nokia's popular homegrown operating systems, including Symbian, in favor of Microsoft's Windows Phone. That caused Nokia's share of the overall mobile-device market to dive into the single digits. At the time, Elop insisted he made the decision because Symbian and its ilk were incapable of competing in the broader market against Android and iOS; revelations by the Finnish media over the past few months, however, suggest that he'd been offered a generous cash incentive for selling off the company, which gives his 'strategic realignment' (which everyone knew would initially collapse Nokia's market-share, as its product pipeline emptied out) a whiff of self-interest. So while it's likely that a Microsoft run by Elop would make some decisive moves, his previous attempt at game-changing quickly transformed Nokia from a communications powerhouse into a second-tier competitor and (eventually) a Microsoft subsidiary. And by eliminating Bing and Xbox, Microsoft would be giving up completely on the search and gaming markets in favor of becoming more of an enterprise-centric company—something that could please analysts mostly interested in the company's bottom line, but basically an admission of defeat in the consumer realm."

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All in favor of Elop getting the job? (5, Funny)

Penguinisto (415985) | about a year ago | (#45370261)

Yes! Let's watch him do to Microsoft what he did to Nokia!

But, that said, maybe a breakup and spin-off of non-core divisions is exactly what Microsoft needs. This whole 'chasing Apple/Sony/{$newTechMarket}' thing is slowly killing them.

Re:All in favor of Elop getting the job? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370297)

I really like Xbox...you can't do everything, but their direction right now is better than Sony's, when you look at the general home person, not just the gamer. I can't wait to get an xbox one and play with the kids.

Re:All in favor of Elop getting the job? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370519)

I really like Xbox...you can't do everything, but their direction right now is better than Sony's, when you look at the general home person, not just the gamer. I can't wait to get an xbox one and play with the kids.

That's nice, but nobody's suggesting xbox should cease to exist or follow a completely different direction, they're just suggesting that Microsoft could sell it off as a separate business.Your liking or not liking xbox has nothing to do with whether it makes sense for Microsoft as a business to hold onto that part of their business.

Re:All in favor of Elop getting the job? (4, Interesting)

0123456 (636235) | about a year ago | (#45370539)

That's nice, but nobody's suggesting xbox should cease to exist or follow a completely different direction, they're just suggesting that Microsoft could sell it off as a separate business.

Who'd buy a company that's lost money over its entire existence and is only making operating profit on old products that it's about to replace?

Re:All in favor of Elop getting the job? (5, Interesting)

Sir_Sri (199544) | about a year ago | (#45370647)

Especially when your 3 biggest competitors would suddenly be two companies long established in the console market (Sony and Nintendo), who both have significant revenue they can operate with, and your other competitor is the guy you just bought the division from - Microsoft, and Windows, who ultimately control most of the underlying technology you rely on.

Unless sony or Nintendo wanted to buy it no one with much sense would want to buy the Xbox division. I can't really see Sony or Nintendo wanting it other than to shut it down.

Re:All in favor of Elop getting the job? (4, Informative)

crunchygranola (1954152) | about a year ago | (#45370651)

Who'd buy a company that's lost money over its entire existence and is only making operating profit on old products that it's about to replace?

Someone who believes that they could manage that line of business profitably.

Profitable business lines sell at a premium. Money losing ones sell at a discount. Lots of entrepreneurial individuals and businesses buy money losing businesses at a discount and turn them around.

Do you believe Microsoft did and is doing the best of all possible strategies and executions with the XBox, and that no one could do better? A buyer would bet that the answer to that is "no".

Re:All in favor of Elop getting the job? (1)

Agent0013 (828350) | about a year ago | (#45370743)

Yes, but Microsoft does not have to pay patent fees to itself. Plus, once it is sold off, each Xbox will need to buy a copy of Windows Xbox or whatever they call it to run on the hardware. Another company would have a huge negative against them even starting off. Perhaps Steam would buy it and put their Linux Steam box on there instead. Already have the hardware in the works, now they would have the branding to go along with it. My opinion is doing that would actually hurt their image. I am much more excited about the Steam Box than I am about the next Xbox.

Re:All in favor of Elop getting the job? (2)

X0563511 (793323) | about a year ago | (#45370815)

You're assuming license agreements and the like wouldn't go along with the purchase.

Re:All in favor of Elop getting the job? (1)

Agent0013 (828350) | about a year ago | (#45370915)

Well, that is true. They could do that. I wouldn't imagine that would go any further that the one generation though. The next one to come out, Xbox 4, would need an updated OS, and MS isn't likely to do that for free. Plus, they would be in the business of selling Windows and Office and not much else. It seems strange that they would not want to milk those for all they could.

Re:All in favor of Elop getting the job? (1)

snadrus (930168) | about a year ago | (#45371013)

It's mostly Windows. If I bought that, it would be to sell a compatible Windows competitor.

Re:All in favor of Elop getting the job? (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year ago | (#45370719)

there's no realistic buyer for xbox.

ironical thing in this prediction of course is that he would kill off nokia(as ms subsidiary) as well!

and then he would focus on the cloud and sell ms as a cloud office company - to oracle!

Re:All in favor of Elop getting the job? (1)

P-niiice (1703362) | about a year ago | (#45370805)

I wish Sega would buy it and run it well. Stay away from the rehash strategy that works so well for Nintendo and focus on new IP, getting 3rd party, and enough/not too many rehashes to keep it fresh. But sadly, I don't think Sega could pull it off in a million centuries.

Re:All in favor of Elop getting the job? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370547)

The idea is to sell it off, not kill it ... it can be a perfectly good and profitable business and still not be well suited to be part of Microsoft.

Re:All in favor of Elop getting the job? (2)

mjwalshe (1680392) | about a year ago | (#45370473)

Which is why Mulaly should be the one to get the job not a failure from Nokia

Re:All in favor of Elop getting the job? (2)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about a year ago | (#45370649)

Come on, you know better than that. It's pretty clear Microsoft will pick some dark-horse candidate with little to no experience to help them collapse the company in the most dramatic fashion possible.

Meego to hell (5, Funny)

goombah99 (560566) | about a year ago | (#45370535)

Elop said he will abandon Microsoft's failed attempt to create a modern operating system and simply bet the whole company on getting in bed with Nokia and use their Symbian operating system. Either that or Meego.

The long term strategy is that after the company craters, Nokia can purchase it for a song, and he can then be tapped to be CEO of Nokia.

He noted that this strategy has worked in the past. "Nokia's cratered stock price doubled after they sold me off of Microsoft, And I can confidently predict that after I crater microsoft, it's price will double when they sell me back to Nokia."

He also pointed out that essentially the same strategy was used by Gil Amelio when Apple abandoned it's OS developement and bought Steve's Jobs and his Next OS, shedding Gil in the process.

"it's proven. Buy another company's OS and bet on it. That's what I know how to do better than anyone."

Re:Meego to hell (1)

0123456 (636235) | about a year ago | (#45370639)

The long term strategy is that after the company craters, Nokia can purchase it for a song, and he can then be tapped to be CEO of Nokia.

That's what I was thinking. Maybe the plan all along was to get Microsoft to buy Nokia, then kill the rest of Microsoft so Nokia rises from the grave with billions of dollars of cash reserves behind it.

Re:All in favor of Elop getting the job? (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370587)

I think he did a fairly good job at Nokia.
Nokia is still alive, they are not a big player but they have not gone under.

Re:All in favor of Elop getting the job? (2, Funny)

Pope (17780) | about a year ago | (#45370731)

Yes! Let's watch him do to Microsoft what he did to Nokia!

Go in as a mole do ensure that it got taken over by Microsoft? Recursive takeover!

Re:All in favor of Elop getting the job? (-1)

girlintraining (1395911) | about a year ago | (#45370779)

But, that said, maybe a breakup and spin-off of non-core divisions is exactly what Microsoft needs. This whole 'chasing Apple/Sony/{$newTechMarket}' thing is slowly killing them.

First, your sed input string syntax is bogus. But more importantly, this has been Microsoft's business strategy since not long after it encorporated: "Extend, Embrace, Extinguish." It isn't killing them in the long term, and analysts only ever look at the short term. I shouldn't have to explain the problem of short term thinking.

Wait. What? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370271)

So the plan is he'll gain stewardship of Microsoft and hand it over to... Microsoft?

Seems a bit redundant

Oh right we're going to pretend Elop wasn't an infiltrator sent to hasten the ripening of a patent laden company down on it's luck

So sad... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370281)

Let me get my violin tuned up to play them some sorrowful music.

He might. (3, Insightful)

marcello_dl (667940) | about a year ago | (#45370283)

He sinked his own company once, he could do it again. But why? I mean, even slashdot had realized Elop was working for microsoft all along, whom would he work for now? Is google planning to buy microsoft? apple? the NSA?

Re:He might. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370389)

Is google planning to buy microsoft? apple? the NSA?

Yes, although not necessarily in that particular order.

Himself (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370623)

He was and always will work for himself - most CEOs are pathological sociopaths, and have interest in no-ones benefit but their own.

Haha (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370289)

To "pull a Nokia on Microsoft" sounds like a fancy way of putting on a condom.

Re:Haha (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370467)

It sounds like that because you're a fuckwit.

Re:Haha (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370871)

Your mother helped me to pull a Nokia on my Microsoft.

Please pick Elop.... (5, Interesting)

Lumpy (12016) | about a year ago | (#45370293)

That moron completely destroyed Nokia, he will do the same to Microsoft.

Re:Please pick Elop.... (2)

Quakeulf (2650167) | about a year ago | (#45370375)

I really like reading about these people who can just waltz into a company and run it into the ground and then jump on to the next venture as if nothing ever happened.

I can do the same for a lot less money. Please pick me Microsoft, I am more economically beneficial! :3

Re:Please pick Elop.... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370601)

I really doubt you are competent enough to create that much loss that quickly. Elop is a professional, you can't compare with him.

Re:Please pick Elop.... (1)

0123456 (636235) | about a year ago | (#45370663)

I can do the same for a lot less money. Please pick me Microsoft, I am more economically beneficial! :3

I've considered it, but even tens of millions of dollars wouldn't be enough to live with myself after forcing Windows on millions of poor, defenceless phone users.

Re:Please pick Elop.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370665)

It's basically what he did all his life. His CV reads like "joins a company, stock options mature, leaves or sells, joins company, repeat, rinse, wash...

Re:Please pick Elop.... (4, Interesting)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | about a year ago | (#45370717)

If you can take less than three years to:

1) take over a huge multinational company with critical patents to the largest growth sector of the tech industry
2) cut its market cap in half
3) sell the board on an acquisition by the company that sent you

then there's a CEO job waiting for you too.

But ... cutting XBox? That would be worth a Sony CEO position...

Yeah right (4, Insightful)

timeOday (582209) | about a year ago | (#45370303)

Elop decided to abandon Nokia's popular homegrown operating systems, including Symbian, in favor of Microsoft's Windows Phone. That caused Nokia's share of the overall mobile-device market to dive into the single digits.

Blackberry stuck with their own stuff, which was even relatively entrenched in the enterprise... a lot of good it did them.

Re:Yeah right (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370893)

> Blackberry stuck with their own stuff,

No they didn't. They bought in QNX as the basis of PlatBook and BB10.

Re:Yeah right (3, Interesting)

feral-troll (3419661) | about a year ago | (#45370919)

Elop decided to abandon Nokia's popular homegrown operating systems, including Symbian, in favor of Microsoft's Windows Phone. That caused Nokia's share of the overall mobile-device market to dive into the single digits.

Blackberry stuck with their own stuff, which was even relatively entrenched in the enterprise... a lot of good it did them.

The thing that killed off Blackberry was not the fact that they stuck with what they were good at. The problem was that they sat with their thumb up their ass for far too long and didn't improve the things they were good at. It might also have helped if they had tried really hard to become extremely good at new stuff. Microsoft, Apple and then Google, with it's Android OS starting doing everything Blackberry did, including push-mail which was one of the Blackberry killer features, but the competition was doing it better. By the time Blackberry finally got off it's ass and innovated it was too late. Once Android started taking off it became increasingly obvious that for any OS to compete with Android it needed to be able to run Android apps and Blackberry realized that too late. That's still true today, any upstart Mobile OS that's just hit the market and that wants to compete seriously with Android needs to be able to run Android apps seamlessly. You need a large volume of Apps for your upstart (Linux based?) Mobile OS to even be considered as an option by consumers and the place that has the biggest App collection is the steadily growing Android monoculture. You can also try to break into Apple's walled garden but I don't recommend it, I hear their lawyers have sharp claws and they bite.

Re:Yeah right (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370923)

I thought Blackberry abandoned its widely used operating system to use QNX.

Re:Yeah right (1)

fwarren (579763) | about a year ago | (#45370947)

That is the problem. Old skool players that have to much of the market cant make the switch. There is to much money in the old product and never enough money in the "where the market will be in 5 years product" to be worth their while. Then in 5 years if they enter the market, they are wannabes without a good product for that market.

Re:Yeah right (1)

X.25 (255792) | about a year ago | (#45370977)

Blackberry stuck with their own stuff, which was even relatively entrenched in the enterprise... a lot of good it did them.

This is the most retarded comparison you could think of.

Nokia had excellent products and a very large and loyal 'user base'.

Blackberry had nothing similar.

Back to Basics (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370309)

Absolutely. If Microsoft wants to survive, it needs to get back to basics, focus on the proven Money Makers, Windows and Office. Release Versions for every platform you can, license your tech to other companies.

Re:Back to Basics (1)

unixisc (2429386) | about a year ago | (#45370513)

Yeah, if he dumped Nokia's homegrown OS like Symbian, can't he also sink Windows 8.x and bring back Windows 7? Or at least separate them into 2 roads - Windows for laptops/PCs/servers and Metro for phones/tablets

Re:Back to Basics (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370769)

You're half right.

He'll sink Windows 8 and create a Symbian for desktops.

Re:Back to Basics (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370827)

And somehow, Microsoft is being vilified for this. Awesome.

Whoa (4, Funny)

vivek7006 (585218) | about a year ago | (#45370343)

He is a double agent! He tricked Microsoft into believing that he was their agent working for them to run down Nokia, all the while he was really working for Google! This could be the plot of a new Mission Impossible movie, Tom Cruise playing Elop?

Symbian, really? (5, Insightful)

chuckugly (2030942) | about a year ago | (#45370349)

Anyone who thinks Symbian was a decent alternative OS and that abandoning it for virtually ANYTHING else was a mistake needs to have their head examined. In fact I'd credit sticking to Symbian for too long with as much of Nokias problems as anything else.

Re:Symbian, really? (0)

Pinhedd (1661735) | about a year ago | (#45370479)

Ding!

Nokia's market share was already dropping rapidly when Stephen Elop was brought on board. Symbian was too far behind iOS and other competing operating systems, and was facing delays in catching up.

Re:Symbian, really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370981)

Nokia's market share was already dropping rapidly when Stephen Elop was brought on board. Symbian was too far behind iOS and other competing operating systems, and was facing delays in catching up.

Yes Symbian was bad, but Nokia's market share wasn't dropping rapidly before Elop Effect:

http://communities-dominate.blogs.com/.a/6a00e0097e337c8833019aff90ac05970b-pi

Re:Symbian, really? (4, Insightful)

Sarten-X (1102295) | about a year ago | (#45370501)

As an OS, Symbian sucked. As an interface to a phone, it worked well. People who wanted a phone to run games and run all the bells and whistles didn't buy Nokia phones. People who bought Nokia phones wanted a phone that made phone calls, and in a pinch could do some other neat tricks, too.

For comparison, consider my wife's old Android phone, which crashed when the Phone app was opened... or my iPhone, which has trouble figuring out whether it wants to use Wi-Fi or 4G for data transfer at any given time. My old Nokia phone was just a phone, and for a large market segment (such as the elderly retirees whose kids insist they have a cell phone "for emergencies"), that's all they need.

Nokia had a niche market all ready as the manufacturer of reliable low-end phones. Elop led them down the familiar Microsoft path of following the latest trends, so they lost that one market they dominated.

Re:Symbian, really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370751)

By large market segment, do you mean small market segment?

Dumbphone service at 80 percent off (2)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#45370895)

Until more carriers start offering bargain-basement plans for Android phones, there will still be a market niche for dumbphones. Currently I pay $7 per month for a Virgin Mobile dumbphone; if I were to switch to a smartphone on the same carrier, my bill would rise to $35.

Re:Dumbphone service at 80 percent off (2, Insightful)

0123456 (636235) | about a year ago | (#45370985)

I have no interest in a phone I have to recharge every day or two which reports everything I do back to Google. So even if they had a 'bargain basement' plan for Android phones, I wouldn't be buying one.

Re:Symbian, really? (4, Interesting)

RobertM1968 (951074) | about a year ago | (#45371005)

As an OS, Symbian sucked. As an interface to a phone, it worked well. People who wanted a phone to run games and run all the bells and whistles didn't buy Nokia phones. People who bought Nokia phones wanted a phone that made phone calls, and in a pinch could do some other neat tricks, too.

For comparison, consider my wife's old Android phone, which crashed when the Phone app was opened... or my iPhone, which has trouble figuring out whether it wants to use Wi-Fi or 4G for data transfer at any given time. My old Nokia phone was just a phone, and for a large market segment (such as the elderly retirees whose kids insist they have a cell phone "for emergencies"), that's all they need.

Nokia had a niche market all ready as the manufacturer of reliable low-end phones. Elop led them down the familiar Microsoft path of following the latest trends, so they lost that one market they dominated.

That, (coupled with the sales figures to support it) is a better explanation of reality. The GP/PP/etc need to stop thinking as techie geeks, and start thinking in the way the highly diverse consumer market thinks. There's a reason the Symbian phones sold. Decent hardware that did the job for people who don't want (or are scared of) smartphones, but want something better than a dumb "calls/text only") phone.

Yes... (4, Interesting)

Junta (36770) | about a year ago | (#45370599)

Evaluating Elop with respect to good/bad done to Nokia:
-Good: ditching Symbian
-Bad: Picking MS, the last place platform
-Bad: Focusing on higher end, North American market and neglecting Nokia's thriving global market.

Basically, the only measure by which Elop was 'good' would be microsoft's measurement of loyalty, willingness to sink his company for the sake of giving microsoft more of a chance.

Just imagine if Nokia had been the provider of things like Lumia 520 but with Android on it....

Re:Yes... (1)

tp_xyzzy (1575867) | about a year ago | (#45370845)

> -Bad: Picking MS, the last place platform

Current marketshare isn't really relevant, since they haven't yet started their work. It takes lots of effort to get the marketshare up, but that's why they have large organisation. All those people need to have something to do, and improving windows phone market share is good task for them. We'll see how the market share improves as soon as they can create enough phones to match the number of phones they were creating with symbian.

Re:Symbian, really? (1)

tapi0 (2805569) | about a year ago | (#45370611)

Yes, you're absolutely spot on. Symbion was heading downwards - the whole point of the 'burning platform' i.e. they were concentrating on developing something without seeing it was slowly burning away around them, and that the time spent continuing on this path meant a long path to turn it around (and in some areas they are).

Re:Symbian, really? (5, Interesting)

king neckbeard (1801738) | about a year ago | (#45370621)

Symbian wasn't a really competitive smartphone OS, but it had a lot of market share and a good transition path towards Maemo/Meego with Qt, which would have been a strong alternative.

Re:Symbian, really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370657)

No. Nokia's problem was sticking with Elop for too long.

Re:Symbian, really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370721)

I disagree. I think the Symbian OS is a great phone OS. It excels at lower power consumption, and I quite enjoyed programming it with Python. It's programming APIs were actually quite simple and easy to use.

You can make the business case for why IOS or Android will get you more consumers looking for the bling-iest phone, but I actually enjoy the simplicity of the Symbian system.

Re:Symbian, really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370861)

But...but... Microsoft! It's evil! They killed Nokia! Those bastards!

Sounds good... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370387)

Xbone and Bing are horrible.

incentives redux (3, Insightful)

minstrelmike (1602771) | about a year ago | (#45370391)

Article: ... they probably looked good on paper, didn't quite work out. Specifically, Elop decided to abandon Nokia's popular homegrown operating systems, including Symbian, in favor of Microsoft's Windows Phone.

Depends on what you mean by "didn't work out."
That decision didn't work out for Nokia but apparently worked out real well for Elop himself.

BillyG would never allow it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370405)

His plan to take over the world says different.
In it the only tech anyone would ever need has an MS Symbol on it.
Granted that it has taken a bit of a hammering in recent years but Elop clearly does not have the vision that BillyBoy has.

Time for focus (3, Insightful)

asmkm22 (1902712) | about a year ago | (#45370407)

Trimming the fat would probably be better for Microsoft at this point. They are trying to dance in too many rodeos, and it's starting to show. Focus on Enterprise, Windows, and Office products. That's a really strong foundation for them. If they want to stay in the mobile phone industry, buy rights to the Blackberry name and focus on the Enterprise and professional markets with solid phones built around security rather than entertainment.

Something like that would free up all kinds of funds for R&D projects into potential technologies, while playing to their strengths. Microsoft is not -- and never will be -- the entertainment company it seems to desire. Yes, there's potential money in it, but it simply doesn't align with their core business.

Re:Time for focus (1)

KraxxxZ01 (2445360) | about a year ago | (#45370965)

Microsoft already won at entertainment [youtube.com] . Win is glorious gaming master race. They could start sending gamers to space and cultivating mushrooms, and still rule the petty enterprise 'industry'.

Elop and million of consumers conspired together.. (1)

JoeyRox (2711699) | about a year ago | (#45370441)

To bring down the market value of Nokia by both releasing new products (Elop) and then not buying them (consumers), all so that Microsoft could snap up a dead-end company like Nokia on the cheap and Elop could get a big, fat cash bonus for orchestrating it all.

Let's not mince words (4, Interesting)

onyxruby (118189) | about a year ago | (#45370465)

Nokia's OS work was absolutely terrible, in fact it was so bad that it made what Microsoft had look good. The one thing Elop couldn't do was stick with the old Nokia way of doing things, it simply wasn't relevant in this time and age. The mistake Elop made was not in getting rid of Nokia's homegrown OS developments, it was in choosing Microsoft's developments to replace them.

Elop should have chosen to go with Android for the killer platform of the their OS with Nokia's hardware. Unfortunately for Nokia he went for the lethal platform of the Microsoft OS with Nokia's hardware. The result was the choosing of industry contacts that Elop had at Microsoft instead of going with Android and systematic destruction of billions of dollars in equity.

Elop can be counted on to make hard choices and get rid of losing platforms. Unfortunately he can also be counted on to make foolish choices to fill the void. Inevitably he will therefore be the next Microsoft CEO...

Re:Let's not mince words (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370627)

But can he throw chairs as well as Ballmer?

Re:Let's not mince words (1)

jasper160 (2642717) | about a year ago | (#45370949)

You beet me to it.

Re:Let's not mince words (4, Insightful)

Antonovich (1354565) | about a year ago | (#45370675)

They could have stuffed it up, but I can't help thinking Nokia would be in the position Samsung are now had they gone with Android. They may have had to tow the line a bit with Google but with their expertise (and kick-arse hardware), I'm convinced they would have made it very hard for others to thrive, even Samsung. And this is not just hindsight talking, LOTS of people knew Nokia would struggle if they went with anything apart from Android. It would have also meant there was a European company in the game too...

Re:Let's not mince words (1)

tp_xyzzy (1575867) | about a year ago | (#45370687)

> Elop should have chosen to go with Android for the killer platform of the their OS with Nokia's hardware.

That's only end-user perspective. There is other considerations, like how operators improve their networks, and what kind of improvements the company's engineers want to do to the os. Also hardware support is important consideration - it wouldnt be good if they had to use same type of parts for the phones as android vendors are using, since world supply of those components is soon consumed already. Important decision point seem to be ecosystem.

Re:Let's not mince words (0)

tapi0 (2805569) | about a year ago | (#45370745)

.... and do what, become yet another also-ran along with the multitude cowering in Samsung's shadow?
By choosing an alternative, nokia was able to sell on a lot of its services (mapping etc) that it wouldn't have been able to do if it went with Android. Nokia retains that, and it makes a lot of money for them - and now has a lot more marketshare than before. If they'd started using android, it would have been hard work convincing the other manufacturers to use their stuff over googles own.
The remainder of Nokia not sold to MS is arguably in a better position by choosing to partner with MS.

No more Xbox? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370487)

Wouldn't that mean that the next gen Playstation would be more expensive?

No ninth-gen Xbox means PS5 vs. SteamOS (1)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#45370989)

If Xbox One were the last Xbox, that wouldn't necessarily hand PlayStation 5 the entire ninth-generation hardcore console market and allow Sony Computer Entertainment to extract monopoly rents from end users and game developers. The PlayStation 5 would still have to compete against SteamOS boxes with their deeply discounted games that run on both the TV and the desktop.

XBOX has done nothing but hurt Microsoft (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370493)

Getting rid of the XBOX would not be the end of their consumer line. They would still have consumer windows, mobile phones and tablets. Which is great, because consumer windows, tablets and even mobile phones will affect the use and purchasing of enterprise systems ... being in these markets can help their core business.

The only thing the XBOX ever did for Microsoft is make them lose money (overall) and weaken their support for the PC. DirectX is basically deprecated at this point, it saw a small update to bring it to feature parity with XBOX One and that was it ... regardless of how profitable XBOX can be, Microsoft should not be running that business since it conflicts with their own. Microsoft has a yearly song and dance routine how they are committed to PC gaming when some executive notices how Valve is making loads of cash and realize that could have been them if they hadn't screwed it up, but it never lasts.

Re:XBOX has done nothing but hurt Microsoft (1)

0123456 (636235) | about a year ago | (#45370617)

Microsoft has a yearly song and dance routine how they are committed to PC gaming when some executive notices how Valve is making loads of cash and realize that could have been them if they hadn't screwed it up, but it never lasts.

To be fair, PC gaming is the only reason I keep a Windows PC around, so they've made about $100 from me in the last five years buying a copy of Windows 7 for the new gaming PC.

I hope he sinks microsoft as well (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370499)

I really hope he becomes microsoft's CEO. Then he sinks it just as fast as he sank Nokia.

Re:I hope he sinks microsoft as well (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370957)

You're not doing too well in the thinking department, are ya? Take your MS blinders off and you'd notice Nokia was already under the waves before MS stuck their claws into them. They held onto Symbian for way too long.

The rumor I've heard (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370545)

Somehow, they need to get Ford's Mulally and EMC's Maritz (ex-MSFT) as a tag team, with Mulally being the CEO/Operations/Mr Outside and Maritz being the product roadmap guy.

That makes sense to me. Of course, they'd have to get Mulally and Maritz to sign on first.

Keep XBox, dump Bing? (4, Insightful)

Animats (122034) | about a year ago | (#45370551)

The XBox unit is profitable. The entire first generation of the XBox was financial lose, but in the last few years, the business finally started to make money.

Bing, not so much. Bing seems to be a dumping ground for Microsoft managers. Every year or so, there's a new management team at Bing. Their business strategy is "copy Google". To some extent, they have to - for a while, their ad system was completely different from Google's, and advertisers wouldn't bother to use it. Something like 80% of Bing users use Internet Explorer. Those are the people who don't know how to change the default search engine.

Google as the only major search engine, though, is scary. The remaining competition in web search is tiny in the US - IAC, InfoSeek, Yandex, and Baidu. (DuckDuckGo and Bleeko are resellers of Bing and Yandex, respectively.) With no competition, Google could charge much more for ads and become even more intrusive.

Re:Keep XBox, dump Bing? (1)

rk (6314) | about a year ago | (#45370725)

I'm going to commit a slashdot crime here, but here it goes: on my Android phone, I have installed Bing. Hold on a minute! I still use Google for searching and everything else. Google Now rocks! It's changed the way I use my phone and organize my data.

But Google Maps on Android is shit for searching. I search for a store that I know is around close somewhere, and Google maps shows me just one that's 30 miles away. Bing shows me all of them, including the one that's a mile away.

Re:Keep XBox, dump Bing? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370803)

Google Maps on android is shit for just about everything. Sadly, it's the best I've seen. Maybe I'll try this bing maps if it can get me navigation from here to there in under a dozen clicks without having to calculate the route twice.

Eggs meet basket. (1)

fahrbot-bot (874524) | about a year ago | (#45370565)

Elop ... would eliminate company projects such as Xbox and Bing while focusing resources on Office.

Yes, because putting all your eggs into one basket is always a good idea. I'm not a Microsoft fan, but this seems like a stupid business decision. Good thing there aren't any free alternatives to Office so Microsoft can keep milking their Office cash cow forever...

Elop decided to abandon Nokia's popular homegrown operating systems, including Symbian, in favor of Microsoft's Windows Phone.

.

Hmm... Microsoft exec gets hired by Nokia, kills in-house OS products in favor of Microsoft OS, company's market share tanks, gets considered for CEO at Microsoft. Nope, nothing fishy here. [/sarcasm]

let's make "Elop" a verb (2, Interesting)

globaljustin (574257) | about a year ago | (#45370573)

as in, "Marissa Meyer is going to 'Elop' Yahoo if it kills her"

or "J.J. Abrahms had better not 'Elop' the franchise..."

yep...

TFA headline actually made me LOL: "Stephen Elop Would Pull a Nokia On Microsoft"

Right?

I think M$ is going to undergo even more headline grabbing changes and someone spinning off a major division or brand (like Xbox) is exactly the kind of way this would happen.

Did you see the article on Playstation 4? I have never bought a PS (from the beginning IMHO it was a lesser nintendo but i'm old school like that...) and I'm not any kind of gamer fanboi but the PS4 looks badass all the way around. It's going to be $100 cheaper on launch and the 3rd Party game situation will be killer

Xbox is M$'s next casualty...seriously...

But yeah, to get back off-topic...let's make "Elop" a verb meaning to abandon a company's popular proven products in favor of an over-designed unusable system, which causes the company to lose sales & eventually be purchased by a competing interest.

Was reading about this in Seattle Times (1)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | about a year ago | (#45370579)

After thinking about it, as someone who worked at Microsoft and has friends who work there, I think Elon has a very good idea there.

Going off mission like Ballmer did the last decade may feel good, but it's the wrong direction.

I may prefer LibreOffice or some other solution other friends are working on, but they really need to shake up the doom spiral that Microsoft is in, and get their heads back in gear.

Visual Studio for all platforms (2)

spiffmastercow (1001386) | about a year ago | (#45370609)

Open VS to other platforms, provide a decent .NET implementation on those platforms, and support languages that weren't invented at MS. This, along with selling their enterprise software on other platforms, could make MS a lot of money.

Re:Visual Studio for all platforms (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370955)

Visual J# coming soon to a Studio near you!

Is Thorsten on the short list? (1)

tapi0 (2805569) | about a year ago | (#45370655)

Thorsten Heins is free at the moment. Not being entirely funny by thinking he'd do a good job, he'd inherited a problem and his actions, though ultimately futile, probably helped extend BBs life and put them in a better position to recover.

Admitting defeat vs what ? (1)

alexhs (877055) | about a year ago | (#45370699)

By eliminating Bing and Xbox, Microsoft would [admit defeat] in the consumer realm.

And you'd prefer them to not admit it and continue to pour money in bottomless pits ?
Thinking about it, that sounds like a brilliant plan to get rid of Microsoft, but I'm not sure anyone of importance comes to SlashBI for the insight.

office is profitable but for how long? (4, Insightful)

Wycliffe (116160) | about a year ago | (#45370705)

Putting all your eggs in the Office camp seems very dangerous. Our office recently
migrated to openoffice and never looked back. I use google docs at home. Both
are currently weak and can only get better. Google has recently added office tools
to android. I see standalone high dollar office suites as a dying breed. I personally
would not double down on them. Same with high-end computer OSes, another one
of Microsoft's cash cows. If microsoft wants to exist in 20 years they need to be in
the tablet, smartphone, tv console, and other growing markets that continue to reduce
the need for a full blown desktop at home. I know a lot of people who no longer have
a desktop computer or see no need for one. This number will probably continue to
grow as tablets/smartphones and roku/xbox type devices continue to add features.

With Elop's record (4, Insightful)

kawabago (551139) | about a year ago | (#45370709)

I wouldn't trust Elop to keep a popsicle frozen. He'd sell off the freezer to save on energy and make his only product, a popsicle, more profitable.

$25.4 million is more than a whiff (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370729)

It is a steaming pile

Round up the usual suspects (1)

TheloniousToady (3343045) | about a year ago | (#45370737)

...which gives his 'strategic realignment' ... a whiff of self-interest.

I'm shocked - shocked! - that any CEO would operate in his self-interest.

Elop says (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45370783)

Purg Bing and X 'Box

focusing on office would be bad (1)

dutchwhizzman (817898) | about a year ago | (#45370791)

It used to be that MicroSoft defeated WordPerfect and they had the only usable office suite available, running on what at least 95% of potentially paying customers had as their only means to do office stuff on.

These days, potentially paying customers use a plethora of devices, over half of which are totally not under control of MicroSoft, neither architecture or operating system, let alone business model. Many of these already offer quite capable alternatives to the MicroSoft office products, or free alternatives are readily available. With current document interoperability standards being forced by large groups of customers, vendor lock in using proprietary formats isn't much of an option for MicroSoft any more.

Office software suites haven't really changed much in the last 10 years or so. You can type a letter, make up a document in a unique way that almost totally not looks like it will come out of a printer in infinite ways, pivot your tables in a spreadsheet, hook it up to a database and make boring presentations with the same sort of spiffy animations that we stopped using long ago. It's a dead horse, there's nothing exciting to build left and even your fridge has an office suite available for it in some app store.

TL;DR, Office software is a hard market to compete in, even if you have a large user base. Betting the family fortune on maintaining that user base and milking lots of money out of them without having the benefits of alternative business models like google does, is at best a high risk bet and most likely a guarantee to fail.

Elop CEO? I doubt MS board is that dumb. (2)

powerpopolon (1781920) | about a year ago | (#45370809)

Even if Elop was staying loyal to Microsoft while working at Nokia, he failed them big time. Microsoft expected him to drive Windows Phone market share up, not to burn Nokia down.

I find it hard to imagine the Microsoft board is dumb enough to view such an underachiever as a serious candidate for the CEO job. All these stories leaking to the media telling the contrary might just be made up to give the impression that the whole Elop / Nokia / Windows Phone story was not the tragic failure it really is, and that the current Nokia buyout plan is not a desperate move where they don't get anything of value, but have to do it because there is no other choice.

Cripple and save at the same time? (1)

RobertM1968 (951074) | about a year ago | (#45370933)

Sounds like a wonderfully horrendous plan. Certain aspects, such as those designed to allow Microsoft to compete in non-Windows environments (if implemented properly) are definitely good ideas. Killing off divisions like the xBox division... not so much.

It makes it seem like he's trying to both hurt them and save them at the same time - sadly, I don't think it'll get them anywhere.

That's of course assuming that the speculation is more than just speculation (and he actually plans on doing such things).

Burning platform v 2.0 (3, Funny)

gmuslera (3436) | about a year ago | (#45370945)

Let's put Windows in the line of fire

Alright, in all seriousness (2)

roc97007 (608802) | about a year ago | (#45370987)

> A new Bloomberg report suggests that Stephen Elop, who's apparently on the short list of candidates to replace Steve Ballmer as Microsoft's CEO, would eliminate company projects such as Xbox and Bing while focusing resources on Office.

Firstly this seems like wild conjecture to me, but let's say for the sake of argument that this is actually Elop's plan, and that he'd have the authority, personal power, and get the buy-in necessary to do all of this. (A huge leap of faith, but let's say it all happens.)

Is this necessarily a bad thing, moving forward? The time where you could make huge amounts of money selling operating systems is past. We can all see that. The practice of tying all products irrevocably together to, I dunno, circle the wagons, and make other Microsoft income streams mandatory in order to participate in any other Microsoft income stream, also appears to becoming less and less effective.

So, if you're going to sell software, what software is there left to sell? Why not drop (or spin off) the side products that aren't part of the company's core comptency, and also drop the infrastructure and operating system stuff (let other people do that for free) and concentrate on applications? I've felt for a long time that Microsoft's attempt to own everything is a conceit from a time that doesn't exist anymore, and will ultimately result in owning nothing. As an app developer, they could eck out a long term existence, although perhaps as a somewhat smaller company. But a smaller company that has long term survival prospects is a heck of a lot better than a huge company approaching a wall at speed.

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