Aug. 29--Microsoft Corporation, the world's largest software company, is counting on internet-connected devices and cloud-based services to put it on a sustainable growth path.
The US-based firm is tackling the continuous decline in personal computer (PC) sales in recent years, said Haresh Khoobchandani, managing director of Microsoft (Thailand).
"Mobile devices and cloud-based services will be our priority now," he said.
Globally, there are 3 billion mobile devices, and the number is expected to exceed the world's population in the next few years.
Adoption rates for cloud storage are also surging. The amount of digital data is expected to reach 4.4 trillion gigabytes this year and to increase tenfold by 2020.
Mr Khoobchandani said Microsoft is determined to use the Windows operating system as a single platform for any applications running on all devices.
It plans to allow developers to create a single app that works across Windows phones, tablets, PCs and other smart devices.
Tablets are set to become a powerful computing device and could replace laptops, Mr Khoobchandani said.
In a survey commissioned by Microsoft of 400 working professionals in Thailand, 85% of respondents said they use laptops for work while using tablets for leisure. That was the highest percentage among eight surveyed Asia-Pacific countries.
In addition, 75% of respondents in Thailand own at least three wireless devices.
Microsoft yesterday introduced its flagship tablet, the Surface Pro 3, the third generation of its tablet lines. The 12-inch tablet, priced from 29,500 to 69,900 baht, will be available in 28 countries including Thailand.
Mr Khoobchandani said he believed the Surface Pro 3 will help stimulate the local computer market this year. Sales of computers in Thailand have so far totalled 2.5 million units.
Microsoft is also focusing on tablets for the educational market, particularly the state's smart classroom project.
The enterprise segment in the retail, manufacturing, telecoms, finance and banking sectors will also be given greater attention because enterprise IT spending is gradually improving thanks to greater political stability, Mr Khoobchandani said.
He said Microsoft would continue to spend aggressively on marketing and people in order to boost its revenue growth to be higher than Thailand's IT spending growth at a compound annual rate of 5%. Last year, Microsoft achieved its revenue target despite the unfavourable economic situation thanks to a trebling of revenue from cloud-based services.
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