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Microsoft News & Analysis

Nadella Asks Microsoft Developers to 'Keep the Faith' #bldwin

Satya Nadella’s came close to calling for a return to Microsoft's founding principals during his keynote speech at the the company's Build 2014 conference in San Francisco yesterday. The speech by the newly appointed Microsoft CEO contained a lot for Windows lovers and mobile phone fans.  But it also contained repeated pleas for developers to keep the faith -- faith in Windows specifically and Microsoft generally. 

Nadella arrived at the conference facing a number of problems that have arisen from Microsoft’s previous lethargy in meeting new challenges, particularly the rise of mobile. 

SharePoint: A 'Formidable Enterprise Collaboration Platform'

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Everyone knows SharePoint has had problems. However, the Radicati Group just released a report that contains words new Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella must be more than happy to hear.

According to the Microsoft SharePoint Market Analysis, 2014-2018, edited by Sara Radicati, Microsoft ironed out the wrinkles in the 2013 edition and now offers a powerful enterprise collaboration platform for business users. 

It's unlikely these claims will go unchallenged, particularly in the file sharing and sync space where companies like Dropbox and Box claim to offer easier file sharing and collaboration possibilities than SharePoint does.

Microsoft is No. 1 Software Vendor, Oracle Takes No. 2 from IBM

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With all the talk about Microsoft’s new CEO and the changes he is likely to bring, it is sometimes forgotten that the company is the biggest software vendor in the world. According to new figures from Gartner, Microsoft retained that crown in 2013, while Oracle muscled past IBM to claim the number two spot. 

That is one of the significant points from the Market Share: All Software Markets, Worldwide, 2013 report, which also notes that Salesforce has pushed itself into 10th position from 12th last year. This is the first time that a cloud or SaaS vendor has managed to make it into the top 10 list.

Microsoft Enters the Marketing Software Ballgame

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Sometime this quarter, a rookie will emerge in the marketing software game. Just so happens this rookie’s name is Microsoft. Microsoft is planning for a Q2 launch of its new marketing capabilities through its acquisition of MarketingPilot.

The new capabilities debut about a year and a half after Microsoft’s acquisition. It will live in the Microsoft Dynamics CRM brand and aims to help marketers drive and manage their campaigns and engage with customers in a personalized manner on multiple devices.

Finally! Office for iPad: Still Want It?

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Let's cut to the chase. Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella’s first press conference since he started 52 days ago was pretty underwhelming.

Yes, he finally announced the launch of Office for iPad, along with the new Enterprise Mobility Suite — surprising just about no one.

But all of those who expected something more from Nadella, like detailed insight about his plans for the company, left disappointed. Aside from discussing his Mobile First, Cloud First strategy and those plans to push all Microsoft customers into the cloud, he didn't say much.

But give him points for being poetic, in person and online. As he noted in a blog post, "As long as human curiosity and ambition drive us to create new things, capture moments and collaborate to get things done, we should expect the world of devices to follow suit."

Google, Amazon Cut Cloud Prices Again

The battle for cloud supremacy intensified again.  At its Cloud Platform Live event Tuesday, Google slashed the prices for its cloud services lower than Amazon and Microsoft. Amazon responded with similar cuts. No news from Microsoft yet, but one thing is clear.

The big winners are cloud users.

Thank You, Jive, Let's Get Producteev

ProducteevDomestic task management is hard enough, unless you’re one of those drones who gets a charge from crossing something off of your “honey do” list. 

Put yourself in the office where teamwork and collaboration are defaults and keeping track of things — like who’s doing what, where’d you put that, when are you going to finish your part so that I can do mine, what’s the priority — becomes a nightmare.

Or not, if you have Producteev, a social task management solution, offered by Jive.

Will Microsoft Dynamics Marketing Trigger the SharePoint Effect?

Will Microsoft Dynamics Marketing Trigger the SharePoint Effect?At last month’s Convergence conference in Atlanta, Microsoft revealed what it had been internally assembling around its 2012 acquisition of Marketing Resource Management (MRM) specialists MarketingPilot. The resulting digital marketing suite has the potential to shake up the marketplace just as SharePoint did in the enterprise content management (ECM) market in 2001.

Vendors Fail Regulated Industry Customers with Rush to the Cloud

Judging from the messaging, reviews and conversations that came out of the SharePoint conference earlier this month, the word from Las Vegas could be summed up as, "It's all about the cloud stupid!" 

With Office 365 growth surpassing SharePoint's, Yammer the new focus of social and the newest buzzwords, Office Graph and Oslo, the drum beat you hear is the continued push to the cloud.

Microsoft SQL Server Wins in a Big Data World

In-Memory OLTP Stored Procedures Based on Usage

While Larry Ellison was in the counting house counting all his money (or trophy homes), Microsoft engineers were hard at work spending thousands of hours building SQL Server 2014.

The new platform that’s being released to manufacturing later today will give Oracle users a boatload of reasons to consider ditching, what many consider to be, an overpriced database of a previous era.

Not only that, but it might give those who are considering SAP HANA for its in-memory capabilities and ability to glean insights from analytical and transactional data a reason to pause and look at Microsoft’s new release.

Microsoft May Release Office for iPad

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If Microsoft press conferences are always a matter of intense speculation and conjecture, the conference that has been announced for next Thursday (March 27th) in San Francisco will be, by anyone’s standards, an exceptional event -- not least because it will be the first conference hosted by new CEO Satya Nadella. 

Of course, excitement is also being driven by speculation that, finally, Microsoft will be announcing Microsoft Office for iPad. 

SharePoint Online Users Get Unlimited Cloud Storage

Just after Google slashed the price of storage in Google Drive, Microsoft responded. It's giving SharePoint Online a massive cloud storage boost. When all the sniping has been said and done, enterprises and business users are the big winners. 

Google Hits Microsoft Again By Slashing Storage Prices

As we noted yesterday, Google upped the game in the ongoing battle for dominance in the productivity suite space by offering new add-ons as well as cash to users who switch to Google Drive. Now Google is slashing the price of storage on Google Drive. 

Renewed Buyout Talk Lifts Jive Shares

Shares of Jive Software jumped during the past few days on renewed reports that the social business provider is seeking a buyer.

Talk of a takeover has risen repeatedly since last May when Bloomberg News reported SAP passed on the deal. The latest report came on Tuesday when Re/code writer Arick Hesseldahl reported the company has been seeking a sale over the past several months with the help of the investment bank Qatalyst Partners, which is led by Frank Quattrone.

Company officials were mum. "We don't comment on rumors," said investor relations spokesman Brian Denyeau. Company spokeswoman Amanda Pires added nothing.

Robert Scoble: The Scobleizer Talks Life, Work and Technology

Thumbnail image for Connecting with Bill SobelRobert Scoble — aka The Scobleizer — works at Rackspace, where he's building a community for people fanatical about the Internet called building43. But that just scratches the surface. Scoble has been making a name for himself on the Internet for a while now.

"There’s a really excellent about page over on Wikipedia about me. I didn’t write a single word about it, but I do watch to make sure it’s accurate," he told me.

So let's start there. He's best known for his (late great) blog, Scobleizer, which came to prominence during his tenure as a technology evangelist at Microsoft. It earned him a mention in the Economist in 2005, which noted Scoble had become

a minor celebrity among geeks worldwide, who read his blog religiously. Impressively, he has also succeeded where small armies of more conventional public-relations types have been failing abjectly for years: he has made Microsoft, with its history of monopolistic bullying, appear marginally but noticeably less evil to the outside world, and especially to the independent software developers that are his core audience."

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