Operating System and Microsoft Corporation

Topics: Microsoft, Microsoft Windows, Operating system Pages: 5 (1796 words) Published: January 28, 2013
Microsoft Corporation is an American multinational software corporation headquartered in Redmond, Washington that develops, manufactures, licenses, and supports a wide range of products and services related to computing. The company was founded by Bill Gates and Paul Allen on April 4, 1975. Microsoft is the world's largest software maker measured by revenues.[3] It is also one of theworld's most valuable companies.[4] Microsoft was established to develop and sell BASIC interpreters for the Altair 8800. It rose to dominate the personal computeroperating system market with MS-DOS in the mid-1980s, followed by the Microsoft Windows line of operating systems. The company's 1986 initial public offering, and subsequent rise in its share price, created an estimated three billionaires and 12,000 millionaires from Microsoft employees. Since the 1990s, it has increasingly diversified from the operating system market and has made a number of corporate acquisitions. In May 2011, Microsoft acquired Skype Technologies for $8.5 billion in its largest acquisition to date.[5] As of 2012, Microsoft is market dominant in both the PC operating system and office suite markets (the latter with Microsoft Office). The company also produces a wide range of other software for desktops and servers, and is active in areas including internet search(with Bing), the video game industry (with the Xbox and Xbox 360 consoles), the digital services market (through MSN), and mobile phones (via the Windows Phone OS). In June 2012, Microsoft announced that it would be entering the PC vendor market for the first time, with the launch of the Microsoft Surface tablet computer. In the 1990s, critics began to contend that Microsoft used monopolistic business practices and anti-competitive strategies includingrefusal to deal and tying, put unreasonable restrictions in the use of its software, and used misrepresentative marketing tactics; both the U.S. Department of Justice and European Commission found the company in violation of antitrust laws. Microsoft is the undisputed leader in the market for operating systems (Sheremata 1997). The Microsoft Corporation has produced the vast majority of operating systems for all personal computers (PCs); moreover, operating systems that Microsoft has created are Windows95, Windows 3.1, and DOS. They also have produced the leading spreadsheet and word processors for both Windows and Macintosh operating systems. They own 85% of the market share with their office software Word, Excel, Powerpoint, Microsoft Exchange, and Microsoft Access. Not surprisingly, most of us have used some if not all of these products and/ or services provided by the Microsoft Corporation.  How did the Microsoft Corporation develop into a software monopoly? For the most part, one or several combinations of the following forge monopolies: an amalgamation of smart business decisions, mistakes by competitors, and at times some shady tactics that a company might employ to become a market leader and monopoly of today. Microsoft had its beginning during the 1970s when IBM was the computer hardware giant of the industry. In 1975 Microsoft was the producer of programming languages for MIPS Altair 7500 (Conigliaro1996). In 1981, Microsoft purchased an operating system for an Intel based 8086 chip from a small company named Seattle Computer Products and redesigned its product to sell it to license it to IBM for its new personal computer (PC) (Conigliaro1996). The redesigned product was released under the name MS DOS 1.0. IBM being a monopoly at that time in the hardware department, by allowing Microsoft to provide the operating system to its PCs, then an outside source, relinquished control of the software industry to this up-and-coming powerhouse. Microsoft retained the right to license their operating system to other manufacturers and helped spur the massive IBM clone industry. Microsoft became one of the leaders in the computer industry during the 1980s with the...
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