Office Heroics

Updated: May 31 2013, 06:26am hrs
Microsoft Office seems to again be coming to the companys rescue when all else looks to be failing

Microsofts Q3 results, released on April 19, showed that the companys revenue had reached $20.49 billion. Of this, the break-up revealed that $6.32 billion (or more than 30%) came from its Office division alone. Its no surprise, then, that Microsoft has been waiting on tenterhooks for some good news from its latest Office offeringOffice 365. Going by the latest numbers for Office 365, however, it looks like Microsoft doesnt have to worry much, at least in this regard. According to a company release this week, Microsoft said that the Home Premium version of Office 365 has reached 1 million customers since its January launch (thats around 3.5 months)faster than Facebook (10 months), Dropbox (7 months) and Hulu Plus (5 months). Of the big-ticket recent software launches, only Instagram reached the 1 million customer mark faster than Office 365Instagram took 2.5 months. Charging a $100 subscription fee for Office 365, Microsoft has again ensured a steady and lucrative revenue stream from its Office division.

Which is great news for the company since the rest of its operations arent looking too good. Apart from declining PC sales (and the corresponding effect on Windows sales) and a tepid response to Windows 8, Microsoft is finding its entertainment division also lagging. As per its Q3 results, Microsoft shipped 1.3 million Xboxes during the quarter, down 9% year on year. In addition, its recently announced Xbox 1, its latest gaming console, has been panned across the internet as being several steps behind its predecessor, the Xbox 360, and its rival, Sonys upcoming Playstation 4. It looks like its going to be Office to rescue again for Microsoft. But the company needs to seriously consider how long it can rely on that software.