The appropriately named Adam Lashinsky, who is the senior large editor at Fortune said that Ballmer knew that the future of personal computing lies with mobile, yet he continues to live in the past.
“I sat incredulous last week listening to Steve Ballmer display more out-to-lunchness than I’ve ever heard from a major CEO,” Lashinsky moaned.
“Ballmer traveling [sic] down a semantical rabbit hole over the future of the PCs. In Ballmerworld, it doesn’t matter that the PC is shrinking in relevance. Any device is a computer, and people will want to use Windows because they’re so familiar with it. By the way, Windows 7, Microsoft’s latest release, is crushing it, further proof that computer users love Microsoft,” Lashinsky said.
Lashinsky said hearing Ballmer made him wonder “What is the guy smoking?”
He said that Windows 7 has been a “success” in part because Microsoft’s previous effort, Vista, was such a stinker.
Redmond has done nothing in the phone arena.
While he does have a point about Ballmer missing the ball on mobile and tablets, he is probably wrong with his assumption that Microsoft should be more like Apple.
Apple has gained its market value by abandoning computing and making gadgets. Its iPad is an expensive but extremely dumbed down slate PC. Apple has never beaten Microsoft on PC seats and never will. However, Redmond has not managed to break out of its tranditional role and that is the fault of Steve Ballmer. It seems.