Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Microsoft Thinks It Has Found the Next Big Thing After Apps

“Microsoft Thinks It Has Found the Next Big Thing After Apps” is an article from Business Insider by Steve Kovach, a tech insider. Microsoft, a multinational technology company, recently announced that it would be coming out with a new program called chatbots. Chatbots, programs powered by artificial intelligence that can help to complete everyday chores or mundane tasks, are becoming more and more popular in the world of technology.
Two years ago, Satya Nadella took over the role of CEO of Microsoft. Chatbots were the first project that Nadella wanted to complete with Microsoft. Nadella hopes that chatbots can be a way for people to get things done on a tablet in a more natural way than having to open a separate application for each task. In order to be successful, he will have tech developers use new tools that other companies have not used to build these chatbots.
Nadella’s main reasoning for pushing the development of chatbots is that Microsoft does not have, or was late in the game, to come out with many of the features that Apple and Android have. Microsoft released a Windows phone long after Apple and Android released smartphones. For this reason, many developers have disregarded the Windows phone. Apple and Androids technology is dominated by applications. Microsoft hopes that chatbots will win over consumers more than Apple’s applications and Android’s applications have in the past.  This is a good example of how information technology can help increase firm productivity because this program may put Microsoft ahead of its competitors.
Microsoft wants chatbots to be run by a new platform completely different from applications. Users will not have to touch their tablet screen in order to use a chatbot. Since the chatbot will be able to do things like book flights and pay bills, it could be used as an example of electronic commerce. Data will be able to be exchanged between consumers and companies by voice on their latest technological tablets.

One thing I think the article overlooked is that Apple’s Siri feature may be very similar to chatbots. Siri is voice activated and can do many of the things that Microsoft claims a chatbot will be able to do. Microsoft will have to create a feature of chatbots that stand out from Apple’s Siri. Another thing I believe the article overlooked is whether or not all different types of Microsoft tablets (i.e. computers, phones, etc.) will be able to feature this program. Finally, I am curious about the price of tablets that feature chatbots.


  1. Microsoft poses an interesting idea with the introduction of the Chatbot, however, it seems to be that this product is too little, too late. Siri has past the stage of being an innovative tool for smartphones and has become a standard accessory in all smartphones and other smart devices. For windows to truly differentiate from the competition, they will have to present an idea that is abstract from the competition. In Kristen's article she discusses how Microsoft plans on having the Chatbots be able to do things like book flights and pay bills without the user touching the device, but this is already possible for IPhone users. It seems that Microsoft is copying other devices, rather than inventing their own. While it is necessary for Microsoft to have some kind of voice system on their smart phones, in order to remain relevant, this is not a new concept and does not put them ahead of Apple or Android. If there are some more qualities that this device would have that would make it unique, I would have liked to have seen them addressed in the article. As of now, it would seem that Microsoft is simply playing catch up.

  2. I think that this article definitely shows a different side to Microsoft. I do like how Microsoft is trying to implement more IT into their programs, however I have to agree with Miranda- Microsoft is coming too late to this game. They're missing the boat when it comes to app development and things of that nature. Chatbot sounds like a great idea... if it had been created 3 years ago. I feel as if it had been created before Siri, it would have been a total hit. But since Apple took over with Siri and apps, and with Android following close behind, I think it is too far of a gap for Microsoft to try to compete. Chatbots to me would only distract from the current Microsoft office suite and I feel as if they have such success with Microsoft office that trying to implement something more Apple-like, will just crash and burn. And it said that chatbots will be able to do things such as pay for bills easily and things similar to this, but I immediately think of Apple Pay and its simplicity and popularity. It is a tough IT and technological competition out there, and I personally do not think Microsoft's Chatbots will be able to survive. This will be interesting to see!

  3. I find it interesting that Microsoft is attempting to create this in order to get a step ahead. I believe it is a good idea but will require a lot of IT, testing, and even updates once it is created. After reading your response to the article and the article itself, I wish more details were given about what Chatbox would actually do and how. Also, I would like to know what devices this could be used on and more about how people would use it in their daily lives and what age group would most likely benefit from an innovation like this. Overall, if Microsoft can successfully develop this application, I believe it could definitely rise above some apple and android applications, devices, and technology.

  4. Hi Kristen,
    I think this article was very informative and I have never heard this related to Microsoft. I feel like we are hearing more and more about artificial intelligence, especially as I have been reading other blogs from our classmates. I agree with the part in the article where Microsoft says they are a little behind Apple and Android. These chatbots would definitely help them get ahead of the game and have something that no one else is producing. However, I think that the chatbot sounds kind of similar to some feature the iPhone has, like Siri. I would need to know more about the chatbot in order to judge though. This is an interesting idea and I would like to find out more.


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