It would also play to Microsoft’s traditional strength as an enterprise technology provider, further distancing the company from rivals such as Apple and Google. They're both commodity providers of software, and only Microsoft and a few other companies are really proficient at direct software monetization. Microsoft needs to build out this moat even further by reducing the number of competitors with which it has to compete.
Next phase of the mobile revolution
Additionally, Salesforce has become the leading force in enterprise technology in the wearables and machine-to-machine space. There is plenty of room for exploration by Microsoft and opportunities for development as wearables in the enterprise are a large, untapped market segment in military, law enforcement, EMS, healthcare, maintenance, assembly, design, and transportation.
The potential buyout will open up new opportunities for wearable app development, as the Salesforce Wear Developer Pack is already a frontrunner in open source starter apps, including reference applications, tools, and codes for developing wearable business processes that can connect to the cloud-based Salesforce1 Platform. For example, ShiftExpert by ClickSoftware, is a native Salesforce1 Mobile ready app that works with Android smartphones to allow employees to automatically clock in and out of work, and then the app incorporates that data into a digital timesheet.
A union with Microsoft could give the two companies the leading device and reporting mechanism by integrating Microsoft Band and Hololens with Salesforce's data and analytics tools. Imagine how much easier training and collaboration could be if you are able to project a holographic image into your workspace through an augmented reality (AR) interface. Among the technology's potential applications is the ability for offsite trainers to show employees how to work through complex tasks by projecting instructions over the real life projects from their glasses.
If Microsoft hammers out a deal, the company stands to gain an army of cloud experts, a major foothold in the San Francisco tech recruiting market, and some of the most popular tools businesses use to manage customer relationships in the cloud.
Microsoft, valued at $385 billion, has already notched two major tech deals in recent years. In September 2013, Microsoft announced it would acquire Nokia's handset business for $7 billion. Last September, Microsoft scooped up the video game franchise Minecraft for $2.5 billion. With Salesforce's market value estimated at $50 billion, a potential acquisition would likely make history.
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