The Seattle PI has done some sleuthing in Microsoft’s annual report to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and found out that by subtracting a few figures, you get a rough $600 million dollars in revenue for fiscal year 2011 for Windows Mobile and Windows Phone.
The math comes from taking the $8.103 billion in Xbox sales away from the $8.716 billion from the whole Entertainment and Devices Division, resulting in $613 million in Windows Mobile, Windows Phone, Zune, Mediaroom, Surface and hardware sales. That means of course that actual revenue is lower than $600 million for just Windows Mobile/Phone.
Nick Eaton of the Seattle PI calls this "abysmal" and depending on how you look at it, perhaps. Compared to Xbox, sure. Compared to Android? Not so much. After all, Google makes $0 from Android sales, though they do take in some money through the limited advertising on the phone. In that sense, making money off of the OS is not Google's goal, but market saturation is. The same is the same for Microsoft at this point. While they do charge for licenses, it's not exactly an area of revenue for them, nor are they banking on it (pun alert). However, neither was Xbox which took 5 years to turn a profit (and after losing billions).
From this we can take away what we already know: Windows Phone sales are not "hot" and this does not change things, making it perhaps a moot point. Microsoft's game plan is Mango, Nokia and Skype for the future. Their make or break moment will be first half of 2012 when all of their systems (PC, Xbox and Windows Phone) really start to converge into a cohesive ecosystem. 2010-11 was more of them warming up and laying the groundwork, which is quite impressive. Throw in the fact that Windows Phone scores higher than Android in user satisfaction, there's no real reason Windows Phone can't explode in market share during 2012. So lets revisit this next summer, shall we?
Source: Seattle PI
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Daniel Rubino is the Editor-in-chief of Windows Central, head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been covering Microsoft since 2007 when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, laptops, next-gen computing, and for some reason, watches. Before all this tech stuff, he worked on a Ph.D. in linguistics, watched people sleep (for medical purposes!), and ran the projectors at movie theaters because it was fun.