Microsoft Ups R&D Budget To $6.2 Billion Over The Next Year

Speaking at a business conference, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer

said
that his company would spend $6.2 billion over the next year, $2
billion more than previously budgeted. Most of this investment will go towards
further developing Microsoft’s online businesses.

Ballmer also spoke about how the open source phenomenon presented a challenge to Microsoft some years
back, and it took the company a few years to learn to deal with it. The advent
of
Google has presented them with a new challenge that a transformation is "not
optional." While Google exemplifies the type of
company success that ad supported software services can yield, Microsoft’s model
to date has been entirely different.

Regarding the
Google Dell distribution deal
, Ballmer stated:

The cost of online customer acquisition is going up. Everybody has got to
decide at what level they want to pay to play. So that was bravo. We know very
well that people will change their defaults, people will change their search.
They will go look, if they think something is worth looking for, and our job is
to create that value. This is a case where you could say we decided that the
return to our shareholders was not there in the business deal that could be
done.

With Microsoft’s plans for transformation, they rightly need to
exercise patience
and allow their company enough space time to adapt to a new model of business,
and learn to compete in an area they are not currently leading.

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