Microsoft: The ripening ‘Mango’



The stage is getting set.
Windows creator-Microsoft,
through a series of partner programs, is strengthening its
attempt to be the king of communications, just as it is the king of
computing. The Windows Partner Conference was attended by 15,000 of
Microsoft’s solution providers from across the world, including
those who build business and consumer applications for mobile users.
At the conference, president of Microsoft’s Windows Phone Division,
Andy Lees said, that Microsoft partners will get exclusive discounts
on Windows Phone devices and accompanying rate plans from mobile
operators. In fact, going much beyond that, Lees also listed down new
ways for Windows Phone partners to get mobility competency
accreditation, and a new Microsoft Partner Network application for
its competency partners. The new benefits and opportunities for
members of the Microsoft Partner
Network (MPN) include an exclusive discount program that makes it
easier for MPN members worldwide to obtain and experience Windows
Phone. The new discount program, which begins immediately, is
available to all MPN members with at least one Microsoft competency.
Also announced at the conference was a new MPN app for all Mobility
Competency partners that will give them easy access to exclusive
technical and sales content for Windows Phone while on the go. To
give these partners a special identity, a special MPN logo was also
unveiled.

Code-named ‘Mango’,
the motive behind the next version of Windows Phone is to reach out
to more than 750 million Microsoft Office users, 150 million Exchange
users and 100 million licensed SharePoint users. Mango, likely to hit
markets by the end of this year, will be the only phone to offer
Microsoft Office Mobile and Outlook Mobile built-in. This capability
can significantly enhance productivity by allowing businesses to
extend their IT infrastructure and utilize Microsoft cloud-based
services such as Office 365 while increasing opportunities for
partners around the globe, believes Lees. This allows Microsoft to
bring a familiar platform and tools together that will help partners
scale quickly and reach new customers. “This represents a huge
opportunity for partners to thrive and grow their business in the
rapidly expanding Windows Phone ecosystem,” Lees added. With this
perspective in mind, the call to partners to join and benefit from
the expanding Windows Phone ecosystem becomes compelling.

Ever since Windows Phone 7
was launched in October last year, Microsoft has got some key
players-Nokia, ZTE, Acer and Fujitsu, on its side. Plus they have
now got over 42,000 developers, who have downloaded over 1.5 million
toolkits, and launched more than 22,000 applications and games, which
is about 100 titles every day. Paul Bryan, senior director, product
management, Microsoft, said, “Our huge base of partners in the
Microsoft Partner Network that are already very familiar with
Microsoft technologies such as Exchange, SharePoint, Lync and now
Office 365, can deliver great customer experiences by making all of
these things available on the go with Windows Phone.” By 2012, IDC
predicts, Windows Phone has the potential to generate annual software
and service revenue of $296 per Windows Phone device for Microsoft
partners. Not bad. Partners riding over Cloud Wave Admitted Steve
Ballmer, Microsoft CEO in front of about 15,000 solution partners who
had assembled to hear what the world’s biggest software company had
to offer, as the cloud wave, seen with a lot of suspicion as a
disruptive business model, gathers momentum.

Partners did have and
still have a feeling of great discomfort with cloud, and the best
thing is to address it and not brush it under the carpet. I am not
holding anybody’s brief, but I am happy to see that industry
leaders are taking the partner route to the cloud. And they better
do. It is the solution providers who have traditionally owned the
customer, have the most interesting and unique set of customer
insights, care for them with time and energy, and translate these
technologies into the solutions that really change people’s lives.
The partner route to cloud is going to be an uphill task though, and
will take a lot of doing. The various types of partners such as
solution providers, developers, SIs, VARs and
distributors will have their specific needs to successfully go to
market. And investments can be staggering. Ballmer said they plan to
pump in about $4.1 bn as incentives for partners to move to cloud.
Beyond that, what is critical is partner awareness. Some very
interesting insights, even though from Microsoft, can be quite
encouraging. For instance, 74% of their cloud CRM deals is happening
through partners. Those cloud partners who have signed in are getting
a good deal-12% of the deal revenue in the first year, and 6% from
the second year onwards. The only on-site guys are being encouraged
to start a cloud division, without abandoning on-site. There is a 30
day free trial period for customers during which partners can help
them understand and try out the advantages. And for the cloud
partners, there is 28% more revenue per employee. In India, I know
that the partner awareness level of the advantages of the cloud is
still very low.

The smart thing that
Microsoft is doing is to exhort its partners to first adopt the
cloud, which effectively means that there are already 40,000 plus
Microsoft cloud customers inevitably, and another 600,000 could log
in. ‘Use the cloud to sell the cloud’ is the slogan. Just over
40,000 partners in an ecosystem of over 6,40,000, means that there is
still a long way to go, but it does show that the first steps are
being taken, across the world. And that is not too bad. Whoever said
that partners are going to be sidelined with this new technology, can
take it easy.

(The author was hosted by
Microsoft in Los Angeles)

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Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Microsoft: The ripening ‘Mango’



The stage is getting set.
Windows creator-Microsoft, through a series of partner programs, is
strengthening its
attempt to be the king of communications, just as it is the king of
computing. The Windows Partner Conference was attended by 15,000 of
Microsoft’s solution providers from across the world, including
those who build business and consumer applications for mobile users.
At the conference, president of Microsoft’s Windows Phone Division,
Andy Lees said, that Microsoft partners will get exclusive discounts
on Windows Phone devices and accompanying rate plans from mobile
operators. In fact, going much beyond that, Lees also listed down new
ways for Windows Phone partners to get mobility competency
accreditation, and a new Microsoft Partner Network application for
its competency partners. The new benefits and opportunities for
members of the Microsoft Partner
Network (MPN) include an exclusive discount program that makes it
easier for MPN members worldwide to obtain and experience Windows
Phone. The new discount program, which begins immediately, is
available to all MPN members with at least one Microsoft competency.
Also announced at the conference was a new MPN app for all Mobility
Competency partners that will give them easy access to exclusive
technical and sales content for Windows Phone while on the go. To
give these partners a special identity, a special MPN logo was also
unveiled.

Code-named ‘Mango’,
the motive behind the next version of Windows Phone is to reach out
to more than 750 million Microsoft Office users, 150 million Exchange
users and 100 million licensed SharePoint users. Mango, likely to hit
markets by the end of this year, will be the only phone to offer
Microsoft Office Mobile and Outlook Mobile built-in. This capability
can significantly enhance productivity by allowing businesses to
extend their IT infrastructure and utilize Microsoft cloud-based
services such as Office 365 while increasing opportunities for
partners around the globe, believes Lees. This allows Microsoft to
bring a familiar platform and tools together that will help partners
scale quickly and reach new customers. “This represents a huge
opportunity for partners to thrive and grow their business in the
rapidly expanding Windows Phone ecosystem,” Lees added. With this
perspective in mind, the call to partners to join and benefit from
the expanding Windows Phone ecosystem becomes compelling.

Ever since Windows Phone 7
was launched in October last year, Microsoft has got some key
players-Nokia, ZTE, Acer and Fujitsu, on its side. Plus they have
now got over 42,000 developers, who have downloaded over 1.5 million
toolkits, and launched more than 22,000 applications and games, which
is about 100 titles every day. Paul Bryan, senior director, product
management, Microsoft, said, “Our huge base of partners in the
Microsoft Partner Network that are already very familiar with
Microsoft technologies such as Exchange, SharePoint, Lync and now
Office 365, can deliver great customer experiences by making all of
these things available on the go with Windows Phone.” By 2012, IDC
predicts, Windows Phone has the potential to generate annual software
and service revenue of $296 per Windows Phone device for Microsoft
partners. Not bad. Partners riding over Cloud Wave Admitted Steve
Ballmer, Microsoft CEO in front of about 15,000 solution partners who
had assembled to hear what the world’s biggest software company had
to offer, as the cloud wave, seen with a lot of suspicion as a
disruptive business model, gathers momentum.

Partners did have and
still have a feeling of great discomfort with cloud, and the best
thing is to address it and not brush it under the carpet. I am not
holding anybody’s brief, but I am happy to see that industry
leaders are taking the partner route to the cloud. And they better
do. It is the solution providers who have traditionally owned the
customer, have the most interesting and unique set of customer
insights, care for them with time and energy, and translate these
technologies into the solutions that really change people’s lives.
The partner route to cloud is going to be an uphill task though, and
will take a lot of doing. The various types of partners such as
solution providers, developers, SIs, VARs and
distributors will have their specific needs to successfully go to
market. And investments can be staggering. Ballmer said they plan to
pump in about $4.1 bn as incentives for partners to move to cloud.
Beyond that, what is critical is partner awareness. Some very
interesting insights, even though from Microsoft, can be quite
encouraging. For instance, 74% of their cloud CRM deals is happening
through partners. Those cloud partners who have signed in are getting
a good deal-12% of the deal revenue in the first year, and 6% from
the second year onwards. The only on-site guys are being encouraged
to start a cloud division, without abandoning on-site. There is a 30
day free trial period for customers during which partners can help
them understand and try out the advantages. And for the cloud
partners, there is 28% more revenue per employee. In India, I know
that the partner awareness level of the advantages of the cloud is
still very low.

The smart thing that
Microsoft is doing is to exhort its partners to first adopt the
cloud, which effectively means that there are already 40,000 plus
Microsoft cloud customers inevitably, and another 600,000 could log
in. ‘Use the cloud to sell the cloud’ is the slogan. Just over
40,000 partners in an ecosystem of over 6,40,000, means that there is
still a long way to go, but it does show that the first steps are
being taken, across the world. And that is not too bad. Whoever said
that partners are going to be sidelined with this new technology, can
take it easy.

(The author was hosted by
Microsoft in Los Angeles)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *