Today, the Chief Technology Officer of ValueWalk, Sheeraz Raza, interviewed Mr. Mark Eisenberg, the director of Fino Consulting. Fino is a New York-based business technology and consulting firm that provides cloud and mobile application design and development services to Fortune 1000 organizations around the world.
Mark and Sheeraz discussed the latest technological innovations and the cut-throat competition among global tech giants. Here is the refined excerpt of their talk:
Sheeraz: Welcome to ValueWalk, Mr. Eisenberg, and thank you for being generous enough to share your thoughts with our readers.
Mark: Thank you, Sheeraz for the warm welcome. I’d love to share my thoughts with the value investors and finance pros.
Sheeraz: Mark, What’s your opinion on Microsoft introducing its own hardware (Surface Tablet) rather than relying on partners?
Mark: Well, no company can leave the responsibility for the success of its product to another company. Partners have different business goals that are not necessarily aligned with yours. Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) has been let down in the past by its hardware partners, and there is too much riding on the success of Windows 8 to risk that again. So, it seems logical for Microsoft to launch its on hardware.
Sheeraz: Do you think Windows 8 Surface tablet can become a market leader even if its price remains higher than the rest of the renowned tablets?
Mark: Absolutely! My answer is a confident “yes”. An enterprise ready tablet device will command a premium just as it does in the traditional laptop and desktop spaces.
Sheeraz: Windows Phone 7 has got hundreds of limitations for consumers as compared to other ruling mobile operating systems. Do you think Windows Phone 8 will have all those features, and it can win the hearts of people?
Mark: Sheeraz, I do not fully agree with the point about “hundreds of limitations” with Windows Phone 7. Windows Phone 8 will absolutely win the hearts of consumers and business users alike. The proof for this lies in the willingness of loyal iPhone users to speak positively about WP7. And WP8 will only be better.
Sheeraz: Google’s Android is considered on top for the developer community just because it is quite open, Apple’s iOS is a choice for developers due to high availability of features. This is not the case in the current version of Windows Phone, which is why many developers are not very happy with it. (For example, SMS API is not open). So do you think Windows Phone 8 will provide every possible feature that is needed today for development?
Mark: The iPhone is considered the top target for developers today because of the ubiquity of its user base. To paraphrase Willy Sutton, you develop for the iPhone because that is where the money is. Android, while initially appealing has been frustrating developers because of the multiple versions in the field and inconsistent upgrade path for users. This makes it very difficult to develop apps for that market. WP8 is a vastly superior development environment to the other two players and its app marketplace treats developers much more generously. In recent polls, a substantially higher percentage of current mobile developers have plans to target Windows Phone in the next 12 months.
Sheeraz: A lot of ruling tablet OS (such as Android and iOS) don’t have the phone functionality in their tablets, which is why they actually are lacking in a particular area. Will Microsoft come up with some phone features in Windows 8 (as it was seen in the last year’s Build conference)?
Mark: To me, Skype seems to represent the Windows 8 phone story.
Sheeraz: How developer community will get benefits if they start right away developing apps for the upcoming Windows Phone and Windows 8?
Mark: It’s the next big thing. By getting in early and learning the ropes, they will be well position to build compelling applications as the market takes off.
Sheeraz: Recently some prominent investors threw in the towel on Microsoft. The shares seem cheap, people worry about the uncertainty in the tech market, and also Steve Ballmer’s uncontrolled spending like on Sykpe. Any thoughts?
Mark: Sheeraz, you can see that Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) has never had a stronger product portfolio than they do now. Their primary revenue stream, enterprises, are not going anywhere anytime soon, and there is a very strong likelihood that Windows 8 will break the enterprise tablet space wide open. Windows Phone is expected to be the No.2 platform within 3 years. Their cloud story is coherent and strong, and nicely coupled with Windows 8. The Kinect and SmartGlass are just the beginning of the Xbox story going forward. And Steve Ballmer seems about ready to retire. I’d say those investors need not worry about Microsoft.
Sheeraz: Mark, thank you very much for sharing your valuable opinion with us. Best wishes from ValueWalk team.
The global tablet market is already crowded with a number of players including Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN), Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG), Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. (LON:BC94), and the father of tablets – Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL). Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ) and Dell Inc. (NASDAQ:DELL) are also planning to launch their own tablets. Microsoft Surface tablet will be coming at a premium price, and only other tablets selling at high prices are from Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL). So there is high probability that Microsoft and Apple will be fighting head-to-head in the tablet space. In the phone operating system market, Microsoft doesn’t have a strong foothold yet, as Android and iOS dominate the market. However, the scenario may change soon. Microsoft already has a tie-up with Nokia, and Lumia smartphones have garnered rave reviews. Nokia Corporation (NYSE:NOK) will bring Lumia smartphones on the upcoming Windows Phone once it is launched in late October.