updated 11:19 pm EDT, Tue May 27, 2014
Nadella details the importance, contributions of each division to Microsoft
During Recode's Code Conference in California today, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said that the company has no plans to sell off the Xbox or Bing divisions of the company to competitors. Xbox has long been a piece of contention for investors in the company, because of the competitive console market and financial losses from the division. Bing, which faces large losses in its own division, is up against larger competitors like Google, but has adapted by integrating into other products.
When asked if he would spin the Xbox division off during his interview at the conference, Nadella said that he has "no intent to do anything different on Xbox than we are doing today." Even though Microsoft investors may not be too happy about those words, the launch of the console has spread Windows to more avenues on a global scale. Not only that, said Nadella, but most of the hardware knowledge the company possesses comes from the Xbox prior to its purchase of Nokia.
Though Nadella said that the company will look at going into more of a mobile- and cloud-first stance instead of device and services, that doesn't mean that the company will shy away from hardware like the Xbox or the Surface. He noted that sometimes, working in software means that creating hardware sometimes becomes part of the process.
"In order to be in the hunt for those experiences, and get it right, you do need to, from time to time, build devices, so you don't leave anything to chance," said Nadella.
When asked if the company was still trying to be competitive with Bing against other search engines like Google, Nadella said that there is a lot more to Bing than just being Bing.com. He pointed out that the search facet of Bing has an 18-percent market share, bumping up to 30 if you include the traffic generated by its search deal with Yahoo. "We are very happy to partner with Yahoo, and not selling it," Nadella added.
Instead, Microsoft will look for ways to improve Bing by looking into smarter search avenues. The company will try to find a way to anticipate a user's request, for example. Because of the company's experience with Bing, they have been able to achieve breakthroughs in understanding questions -- posed in a way that's natural to humans and offering an appropriate response. New features in search could use recommendations for a large number of topics that companies like Netflix and Pandora have championed in their specific venues.