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Ballmer's new chant: Numbers, numbers, numbers

Jon Brodkin | July 11, 2011
Microsoft may no longer be the biggest tech company, but CEO makes case to partners with big sales numbers.

Microsoft showed how Bing is more a "decision engine" than a search engine, giving as an example a widget that let you search multiple ticket vendors for seats to baseball games while getting a list of best prices and a virtual view of the field from the seats up for sale.

Bing will grow in importance as it is integrated more heavily with Windows Phone 7, and even in the Xbox, with voice-activated search on the gaming console.

But Microsoft's biggest cash cows are still Windows and Office. Despite being forced to bring parts of Office to the cloud by Google and other rivals, Microsoft managed to sell 100 million licenses to Office 2010.

This was the first time Microsoft revealed this number. Previously, Microsoft said Office 2010 was selling a copy per second, which worked out to sales of only about 31 million.

The sales of 400 million Windows 7 licenses since 2009 is also an update on the previously announced figure of 350 million.

Ballmer said Microsoft OEMs have sold 350 million new PCs in the past year, which could theoretically include earlier versions of Windows. Ballmer mocked Apple for selling only about 20 million Macs per year.

"Three-hundred fifty, last time I checked, is a lot more than 20," he said.

Microsoft is also making some product updates at the partner conference, with new capabilities for the Intune management service, and news from the Office 365, Dynamics and Servers and Tools product lines are expected Tuesday.


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