After announcing last week that he would be stepping down as Microsoft's chief software architect, Ray Ozzie has posted an essay where he warns that the end is near for the Redmond company's way of doing business. Despite all of the businesses that Microsoft has gotten into over the past two decades, only two account for the bulk of the company's enormous profits: Windows and Office.
According to Ozzie, these platforms are getting too complex to build and use. This is likely to spur both to move toward simpler, more appliance-like systems, such as mobile phones and tablets. While Ozzie praises the progress that Microsoft has made with online services like Live, Office 365, SharePoint and others, he warns that many opportunities have been squandered, especially in mobile.
Ozzie highlights the success of other companies in agile innovation in a rapidly changing marketplace. While Apple, Facebook, and Google are never mentioned by name, those are clearly the examples that Ozzie thinks Microsoft should be following.