This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
TheStreet Open House

Microsoft Moves to Copy Apple and Google

Stocks in this article: MSFTAAPLGOOGNOKHPQBBRYBBY

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Microsoft's (MSFT) acquisition of Nokia's (NOK) smartphone business should come as no surprise to those who have watched Microsoft over the last year. The strategy has turned into copying Apple (AAPL) Apple and Google (GOOG) more and more, and for good reason.

Let's count the ways:

Stores: People have been making fun of the Microsoft stores because nobody seems to be actually buying anything there. I think that's a little bit unfair as it's still early in the game. Microsoft has made the only serious attempt at copying the fantastic Apple stores, and it just needs to drive this strategy with hundreds of more stores combined with more attractive products.

Basically, ask yourself: Why shouldn't Microsoft copy the Apple stores? Of course it should! In fact, it should have had hundreds of them by 2007-2008. Hey, better late than never.

What about Google? The good news for Google is its products -- Android and Chrome OS -- basically don't need any customer service. They're so easy to use and set up that you don't need to deploy an army of stores and "geniuses." So that's the good news.

The bad news for Google is its products remain unknown to most people, despite its mushrooming Android smartphone market share. Most people, for example, don't know Google sells laptops. Therefore, Google needs stores not so much for customer service but as showrooms. The logical thing to do in order to get a quick start here would have been to acquire Best Buy (BBY). I guess Google wishes it had done that in December.

Phones: Apple and BlackBerry (BBRY) have their own hardware. Google owns Motorola, but Motorola is only a tiny percentage of Android sales. In addition, Google makes its own laptop while relying on Samsung, Acer, HP (HPQ) and Lenovo for the bulk of its laptop sales. Google also makes its own Glass and Chromecast hardware products.

Microsoft has its own Xbox, and has made peripherals such as keyboards and mice for a long time. One year ago, it launched the Surface tablet-with-a-keyboard. Basically, it was a disaster resulting in a huge write-off. A new Surface family is expected to launch in mid-October, optimized for Windows 8.1.

1 of 3

Select the service that is right for you!

COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
DOW 17,390.52 +195.10 1.13%
S&P 500 0.00 -2.75 -0.14%
NASDAQ 4,630.7410 +64.6030 1.41%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from Bankrate.com

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs