April 2018. DIGooGle makes popular a GigaCrunch post: Microsoft Apocalypse
Vista was the beginning of the end. A few years after its launch, the debacle was inevitable. First the SMEs and SOHO abandoned Microsoft when it stopped Windows XP support. By that time Google had launched G-Enterprise, consisting of Google Apps + Skype Enterprise Edition + Salesforce.com + Goobuntu Enterprise Desktop + Android Nomad Office. To this package companies could add Google Shared Drive, as a common network storage, and Apps Engine to develop the company Intranets, Extranets and any company web application.
SMEs, fed up with Microsoft tyranny on expensive licenses for Windows, Office and Exchange, moved to G-Enterprise. Not only companies saved licenses, but also increased productivity, shifting employees mindset to use network collaborative tools like Google Docs, Salesforce or Skype. Meantime, the Cloud on which these tools resided was safely managed by Google. Microsoft SaaS offering came too late, and no one trusted Hotmail as a serious email for work.
Multinationals followed the G-Enterprise trend some years later, hitting severely Microsoft licenses sales, with the Server segment already dominated by Linux.
On the consumer front, Apple ended being the winner. After some Microsoft viral campaigns that destroyed Microsoft image, consumers were embarrassed of admitting they had been fooled to buy Vista. Apple got even more iconic and stylish, and not having a Macbook or an iMac just meant you were not in. Some teenagers issued (and won) lawsuits against their parents for the emotional damage of forcing them to use a Windows PC instead of a Mac. Linux still commanded some market share, thanks to LinuxMCE, mainly used by lovers of P2P file-sharing free content. Linux remained the warranty for freedom against any monopolistic move from Apple.
Such was the hit taken by Microsoft with its loss of licenses income, that it was forced to split and sell its two profitable businesses:
- first the gaming business went to Google that transformed the console into Gbox360 featuring targeted advertisement within the games,
- then the on-line business, branded Yahoo Live, went to News Corp, that had already acquired Facebook years before
Microsoft software license business was finally acquired by IBM, still nostalgic of a decision they should have made 40 years earlier. Microsoft was merged within IBM Lotus division, that surprisingly still managed to sell to banks. Windows was renamed OS2 Warp Second Edition, and IBM licensed it to Lenovo PCs and Thinkpads.
A sad ending for a company that transformed the world with its software.
Note: This fiction prediction might not come true. We expect Microsoft puts the means to avoid it.