) and Major League Soccer (MLS) have announced a multiyear
agreement to use the Windows 8 platform to bring the latest news
in soccer to MLS fans.
Through the agreement, the two giants will launch an improved
MLS app which will be powered by Windows 8. The new app will
provide exclusive content as well as the on-going season's
schedule, highlights, standings, play-by-play, goals, roster
line-ups, game stats, cards and substitutions. Further, viewers
can customize the app according to their preference and get
updates about their favourite club news through Windows 8 Live
The partnership will bring the latest in technology to MLS
soccer fans. The alliance will broaden the reach of both the
companies, going forward. MLS will be able to reach a broader
customer base and Microsoft will be able to expand its OS.
Currently, just like other PC makers, Microsoft is also
battling the slump in the PC market caused by the sluggish
economy. To make matters worse, tablets continue to cannibalize
its core PC market. Although Microsoft has launched its own
mobile devices (both tablet and smartphone), it will have to deal
with significant competition in these markets.
According to a report by IDC,
) Android OS shipments touched 162.1 million units in the first
quarter of 2013, up 79.5% year over year. In the process, it
captured 75% market share, followed by
) iOS, which managed to hold on to a 17.3% share and
Research In Motion's
) Blackberry OS, which captured 2.9%. The Windows OS lagged far
behind with a mere 3.2% share. However, Microsoft's growing clout
in the academic and government verticals, as well as steady
progress in the consumer hardware business bode well for
Microsoft remains one of the best positioned software vendors,
given its wide range of products, emerging markets' strength,
continued technology deployment at data centers and growth in
cloud computing. We believe that Microsoft's current investments
are supported by its strong balance sheet and expect these to
drive the next growth phase, improving prospects of market share
Microsoft reported revenues excluding deferrals of $20.49
billion in the third quarter of fiscal 2013, which were down 4.5%
sequentially but up 17.7% from last year, more or less in line
with our estimates. All segments grew strongly from the year-ago
quarter but declined only slightly from the seasonally strong
December quarter. Microsoft's Business Division grew both
sequentially and year over year.
Microsoft has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).
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