Are Microsoft's Best Days Behind It?

By Lawrence Walsh  |  Print this article Print

Microsoft remains the world's largest and most successful software company. But the company that Bill Gates built is increasingly falling out of conversations and there are troubling signs that its losing relevancy. Will Microsoft remain at the top of the IT mountain?

Are Microsoft's best days behind it? Is Windows 7 the last gasp of a dying dynasty? Will the day come when Microsoft isn't among the pantheon of IT vendors?

It's strange and almost silly to think of putting Microsoft on a death watch, but chatter is increasingly rising about the steady decline and dimming future for the world's largest and most successful software company. Just a couple of years ago Microsoft seemed an invincible force, yet an increasing number of pundits and solution providers are watching Microsoft with a distant eye to a glorious past rather than the promise of a bright future.

Over the past week, I've had a few conversations with solution providers about the top vendors and where they'll line up in 2010. While none is taking Microsoft out of contention, the company doesn't pass their lips when they rattle off their top five. Top of mind awareness is owned by Cisco, HP, IBM, EMC, VMware and Google. Microsoft is a passive consideration.

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Lawrence Walsh Lawrence Walsh is editor of Baseline magazine, overseeing print and online editorial content and the strategic direction of the publication. He is also a regular columnist for Ziff Davis Enterprise's Channel Insider. Mr. Walsh is well versed in IT technology and issues, and he is an expert in IT security technologies and policies, managed services, business intelligence software and IT reseller channels. An award-winning journalist, Mr. Walsh has served as editor of CMP Technology's VARBusiness and GovernmentVAR magazines, and TechTarget's Information Security magazine. He has written hundreds of articles, analyses and commentaries on the development of reseller businesses, the IT marketplace and managed services, as well as information security policy, strategy and technology. Prior to his magazine career, Mr. Walsh was a newspaper editor and reporter, having held editorial positions at the Boston Globe, MetroWest Daily News, Brockton Enterprise and Community Newspaper Company.

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