Microsoft expanding in public sector for more exposure
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Microsoft expanding in public sector for more exposure

When a company has a stellar product, it tries to find applications for that device outside the normal range of what might be considered its pertinent uses. This could entail deriving new versions of an existing product or simply discovering new areas where these tools may be of use. Microsoft is attempting to take this path as well, branching into other aspects of the public sector by acquiring companies and expanding its hardware capabilities.

According to ZDNet, Microsoft recently purchased Hoeft and Wessel AG, a German firm specializing in public transit terminals and tools. The move may signal a transition into the transportation industry, potentially banking on Microsoft's touch screen technology and its new Windows 8 software. The source wrote that Hoeft and Wessel's current offerings already run solely on Android technology, but the acquisition could signal global deployments of similar devices in other nations. It may be that in America, commuters could use Microsoft products to purchase train fare, plan trips and get information about service changes from touchscreen interfaces on station platforms.

More than mobile
Microsoft has been branching into other realms for some time now, previously deploying touchscreen table tops for use at bars and restaurants, as well as interactive menus and other similar tools in the hospitality industry. These solutions didn't catch on the way Microsoft intended, so after its failure five years ago, the company is seeing better reception of its smaller, portable Surface tablet. Surface tables are still available at some establishments, and there's a possibility that the coming years may see more Surface integration into the business world.

Tablets are a proliferate part of the corporate enterprise already, and a recent poll by CDW showed that more than half of all companies in the United States currently use them for critical business processes. Nearly 10 percent of all organizations have been doing so for three or more years, and the majority of these products are consumer-owned. That means Microsoft's drive to enter the public sector could be well targeted, as greatest share of tablet sales is in the public arena, anyway. Coming up with business resources may not be as lucrative, hence why the Surface failed as a large-scale project but is faring better as a personal device.