The following is a post by Frank Shaw, Corporate Vice President, Corporate Communications.
Earlier this morning, we held our Shareholder Meeting here in Seattle. As Shareholder Meeting goes, it was fairly uneventful. But during his speech at the meeting, CEO Steve Ballmer shared some numbers and business updates that bear repeating and amplifying. So as we near the end of calendar year ’12, here are 12 fast facts from Steve’s speech worth repeating …
- Last fiscal year (which ended on June 30) cash flow from operations increased 17 percent to US$31.6 billion;
- In the month since Windows 8 became generally available, we’ve sold 40 million Windows 8 licenses;
- Windows Phone 8 has been on sale for a few weeks and is also off to a great start; we’re already selling 4 times more phones than at this time last year;
- Xbox concluded another successful Black Friday holiday sales period; in the U.S. alone we sold more than 750,000 consoles, extending our lead as the number one entertainment console;
- Several Windows 8 apps have reached more than 1 million downloads from the Windows Store;
- Office 365 is on track to be one of our fastest-growing businesses ever;
- The number of certified Windows 8 PCs has grown to 1,500. These new devices will start to hit shelves worldwide in the coming weeks;
- It’s not just consumers who’re adopting Windows 8, businesses are as well;
- Windows Phone Store has more than 120,000 apps, and we’ll soon have 46 of the top 50 apps that people use;
- We also exceeded expectations for Halo 4 by adding millions to the record setting $220 million opening;
- Windows 8 is outpacing Windows 7 upgrades;
- We returned more than $10 billion to shareholders through stock buybacks and dividends.
Here are a few bonus facts that have come to life recently as well:
- Outlook.com has gone from 0 to 25 million active users in just under four months since it first became available;
- Since the inception of the authentication service on the Windows Azure platform in 2010, we have now processed 200 billion authentications for 50 million active user accounts. In an average week we receive 4.7 billion authentication requests from users in over 420,000 different domains.
- And as Mary Jo Foley reported, our Server & Tools division now includes six $1 billion businesses.
- The Bing team revealed earlier this week that Kim Kardashian was the most searched person in 2012.
OK, I’ll admit it. This last fact is pure link bait.
Now, with some facts out there about how our business is actually performing, here’s how Steve concluded his talk this morning:
“It’s an era of incredible opportunity for Microsoft as well as the millions of developers building for our devices, our 640,000 partners, as well as our customers. We’ve come a long way in the past year, and I could not be more excited for what’s ahead.”