In his annual letter to shareholders, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer hinted that more Microsoft-branded devices may be launched in the future. Microsoft already has the Xbox and upcoming Surface tablet, while Ballmer suggests that the Redmond, Washington-based company will continue to focus on creating devices for specific purposes.
By improving its integration between software and hardware, Microsoft is essentially sharing the approach that Apple takes with its products. At the same time, Microsoft will continue to work closely with its several hardware partners to ensure that customers have a choice when it comes to purchasing a Windows PC, tablet or mobile device.
“There will be times when we build specific devices for specific purposes, as we have chosen to do with Xbox and the recently announced Microsoft Surface,” wrote Ballmer. “We will continue to work with a vast ecosystem of partners to deliver a broad spectrum of Windows PCs, tablets and phones. We do this because our customers want great choices and we believe there is no way one size suits over 1.3 billion Windows users around the world.”
According to Ballmer, there is a “remarkable amount of opportunity” available for Microsoft in the next year, especially in select areas of growth such as cloud computing, tablets, mobile phones, and server and cloud networks. Ballmer adds that Microsoft is uniquely positioned to lead in those areas because of its extensive portfolio of devices and services. Perhaps a Surface Phone will be in the mix?
“We are uniquely positioned to lead in these areas given the breadth of our devices and services portfolio, as well as our large, global partner and customer base and the growing Windows ecosystem,” Ballmer concluded. “It truly is a new era at Microsoft — an era of incredible opportunity for us, for the 8 million developers building apps for our devices, for the more than 640,000 partners worldwide and, most important, for the people and businesses using our products to reach their full potential.”