Microsoft today posted what many investors have for a while feared the most: their first ever quarterly loss. Analysts are pinning the blame on the company’s writedown on their 2007 acquisition of ad company aQuantive, which has a resulted in a six-cent loss for every share of revenue worth $18.06 billion.
Microsoft, previously one of the hottest, largest trend setters in technology, has more recently had issue combating competitor Apple in many product categories. While Apple has created hit product after hit product with the iPod, iPhone, and now iPad, Microsoft has responded with the ultimately failed Zune music player, the floundering and distantly third place Windows Phone operating system, and the upcoming Microsoft Surface, a Windows 8 based tablet due later this year. Many have already criticized the Microsoft Surface as nothing but a “me-too” knockoff of the iPad.
Specifically, Microsoft saw a 13 percent decrease of revenue in the Windows & Windows Live Division, despite seeing shipments of Windows Phone devices rise 50 percent.
Analysts had been previously expecting Microsoft to announce earnings of about 62 cents per share prior to the announcement. This news certainly must come as a shock to the tech community.