The History of Microsoft
Founded by Bill Gates and Paul Allen on April 4, 1975, Microsoft has become one of the world’s largest software and technology companies. It is headquartered in Redmond, Washington, and has offices worldwide. Microsoft’s products and services include a wide range of consumer and business software, operating systems, and hardware. Microsoft also offers cloud computing services through Azure. Microsoft has also made a number of acquisitions. These include LinkedIn and Skype.
The company started with an Altair 8800 microcomputer, which Gates and Allen built a BASIC interpreter for. Gates then offered to write a program for the computer, and the two men teamed up to form Microsoft.
Microsoft was initially a hardware manufacturer supplier. However, as technology grew, Microsoft recognized the consumer market and shifted its focus to selling software. Microsoft was among the first to release a PC-based operating system, Windows, in 1990. It later developed the Xbox, a video game system. During the 1990s, Microsoft captured a greater share of the PC market. It also released Windows NT, which surpassed Novell’s NetWare in market share. The company’s software became less expensive and more useful. The company’s success encouraged technical innovation.
As the business world expanded, Microsoft recognized that it needed to provide faster, more reliable communication. Its products included Outlook, which serves as a portal for e-mails and contacts. It also developed a web browser, Internet Explorer, which was considered the market leader.
As Microsoft continued to develop new products, it also shifted its focus toward cloud computing. In 2008, Microsoft released Windows Azure, which offers a cloud computing platform. The company also offers cloud versions of Office, which includes Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. It also offers Windows Phone and Xbox consoles.
Microsoft’s main research and development center is located in Redmond, Washington. The company also has offices in Cambridge, England; New York; Bengaluru; Montreal; and Beijing. The company’s products include Windows, Xbox, Surface tablet computers, and Microsoft Office. The company is also one of the world’s largest publishers of operating systems.
Microsoft has also produced several billionaires. In the 1990s, the company’s top executives included Bill Gates, Steve Ballmer, and Ray Ozzie. In 2006, Gates stepped down as CEO, retaining his position as chairman. He handed the title of chief software architect to Ray Ozzie.
In 2011, Microsoft acquired Skype for $8.5 billion. The company added Skype to the Xbox, Windows, and Outlook products. The company also launched Xbox Live, a video gaming platform. Microsoft’s other products include Windows Server 2003 and Windows XP, as well as the popular Office and Access software suites.
Microsoft is also a leading provider of cloud computing services. Microsoft has introduced a series of hybrid tablet computers, called the Surface line. The Surface RT, the Surface Pro, and the Surface 3 are all available. These tablets are bundled with Microsoft’s Windows operating system.
Microsoft has also made several acquisitions in the past, including LinkedIn for $26.2 billion. The company also owns Mojang, a game studio, and Github, a code repository. The company also has offices in more than 60 countries.