Breakout

Hipsters baffled by Microsoft's new cool

Jeff Macke
Breakout

Microsoft (MSFT) released Office for iPad last night and to the surprise of critics everywhere the product isn't at all terrible. In fact the way Microsoft has handled the entire process of conceiving, announcing and delivering an Office product to work with the world's dominant tablet has been almost... cool.

New CEO Satya Nadella seems smart, composed and rational. Microsoft getting comfortable in its own skin and focusing on moving product is an idea to which Wall Street is accustomed. If device-agnostic quality product like Office for iPad is Microsoft's new normal the stock could have more room to run. Perhaps is now Apple (AAPL) chained to the cash beast that is iTunes the way Office and Windows once controlled Microsoft’s every move.

What if Office for iPad is the first step in Microsoft recapturing the coffee house as well as the corner office?

Obviously suggesting Microsoft is anything other than a stumbling Goliath muscling its way to marketplace success is pure heresy. Over the last year Microsoft stock has doubled the performance of Apple but that’s merely a hiccup. Hipster cynics still insist signs of humanity emanating from Redmond are an illusion and who are we to doubt?

Like Copernicus dedicating his model of a heliocentric universe to the Pope, it’s prudent to note Apple is still awesome and visionary. Despite his lack of style or fresh product, Tim Cook is certainly more in touch with his inner hipster than Satya Nadella. It will take more than the very late arrival of Office for iPad to convince anyone Microsoft and Apple have reversed roles.

Having genuflected before the cognoscenti it must be noted that Office for iPad is a marvel of execution in comparison to Siri, which doesn’t recognize my voice, and a fingerprint scanner only vaguely familiar with my hand.

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