There’s a new hardware player in town, but it has a familiar name: Microsoft.
The software king has taken a hard look at itself and refocused its efforts on what it calls “devices and services” to kick off a new company chapter.
The decision was announced in a letter to shareholders from Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer. He called the move a “significant shift” that affects every part of the company.
The letter codifies a strategy Microsoft has been headed toward for a while, pulling a page out of Apple’s playbook.
It was clear that Microsoft was moving toward producing its own devices when it announced the release of its Windows 8 Surface tablet, a move said to unsettle its many manufacturing partners.
Heading off some of those concerns, Ballmer said in the letter that the company will continue to “work with a vast ecosystem of partners” on Windows PCs, tablets and phones. But, he added that the company, on occasion, will also build “specific devices for specific purposes,” as it did with the Xbox gaming console and the Surface.