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Microsoft first-quarter income down 18 percent, still beats expectations

Nilay Patel

Microsoft just turned in its first quarter financial report card, and while the good vibes around Windows 7 launch haven't yet begun to fade, the numbers here aren't exactly cheery: revenue is down 14 percent from last year at $12.92b, operating income is down 25 percent at $4.48b, net income is down 18 percent at $3.57b, and earnings per share are down 17 percent at $0.40. Not wonderful, but it's better than analysts were expecting, and the stock is actually way up on the news. Adding in the deferred revenue from early sales of Windows 7 makes things look a little better still, with only a four percent decline in revenue and an eight percent increase in earnings per share, and the Entertainment and Devices Division -- home of the Xbox 360 and Zune HD -- is also a bright spot, increasing income from $159m to $312m on essentially unchanged revenue. Of course, the big test will actually be next quarter, after Windows 7 has really had a chance to make an impact -- we'll see if all these warm fuzzies translate into cold hard cash.

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