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Microsoft Founder Bill Gates Regrets Mistakes with Mobile Strategy

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As co-founder and long-time CEO of Microsoft, Bill Gates has had first-hand knowledge of the company for over four decades. Over that time there have been a lot of highs, but also some notable lows. Speaking in an interview with The Indian Express, Gates says missing out on mobile remains his biggest regret.

Gates has previously been vocal about Microsoft’s labored approach to mobile platforms costing the company. Speaking in his latest interview, the billionaire emphasized that feeling by claiming that he personally made mistakes during that era:

“Microsoft didn’t end up doing the phone operating system well enough. I made mistakes there that I regret.”

While that all Bill Gates was willing to say on Microsoft’s failings in mobile, it’s clear that failure rankles him. It arguably doesn’t matter to Microsoft considering the company is currently thriving. However, there’s no doubt Microsoft missed out on a chance to rival Apple and Google in the mobile space.

It’s something Gates has discussed before. Back in 2019, he revealed he made an error by not purchasing Android before Google snapped up the operating system for just $50 million. Gates believes getting Android and being successful in mobile would put Microsoft above all other companies, not just rivalling them:

“It’s amazing to me that having made one of the greatest mistakes of all time, and there was this antitrust lawsuit and various things, that our other assets like Windows and Office are still very strong, so we are a leading company,” says Gates. “If we had gotten that one right, we would be the leading company, but oh well.”

Mobile Loss

Gates is sure Apple’s success in mobile was guaranteed because the company was riding a high from iPod. He has previously said there was only room for one more platform and that happened to be Android:

“It’s amazing to me that having made one of the greatest mistakes of all time, and there was this antitrust lawsuit and various things, that our other assets like Windows and Office are still very strong, so we are a leading company,” says Gates. “If we had gotten that one right, we would be the leading company, but oh well.”

Of course, Microsoft still went after the mobile market with Windows Phone (latterly Windows 10 Mobile). Despite many efforts to stimulate Windows Phone, including the purchase of Nokia’s Lumia hardware division, Microsoft failed. In 2020, there is no mobile platform from the company.

Gates said in 2019 he believes anti-trust cases against Microsoft prevented Windows Phone from thriving. Of course, Microsoft remains in the mobile space and is one of the biggest app developers for smartphones and tablets. Furthermore, the company now has its Surface Duo smartphone, albeit running on Android.

However, it is a question that hangs over the company and clearly Gates… what might have been?

Tip of the day:

File History is a Windows 10 back up feature that saves each version of files in the Documents, Pictures, Videos, Desktop, and Offline OneDrive folders. Though its name implies a primary focus on version control, you can actually use it as a fully-fledged backup tool for your important documents.

Source Winbuzzer

Chioma Ugochukwu

The author Chioma Ugochukwu

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