Strategy 1: Device Compatibility
Realizing that users choose to be active in multiple platforms, the direction has changed into one of compatibility. For Microsoft to progress, the new strategy shows that they are no longer are they thinking of Windows only. Even though the current corporate world is predominated by Windows, the reality is that an increasing number of users are bring their own non-Windows devices in the work environment. It's unlikely that Windows on the desktop will fall in the next 5 years. However, if the last decade of mobility is any indication of where we are headed, then Microsoft needs to play catchup fast.
By bringing the Office environment to Apple's door step, Microsoft is angling itself to be a software first company.
Next Step: Embrace AndroidLinux maybe supreme in the server world, but for regular users there are four prominent environments that they regularly interact with: Windows, MacOS, iOS, and Android. With Apple growing on two of these environments, Microsoft has shown that they are willing to play ball on Apple's court. Now they need to set their sights on Android. In the USA, Android might be on a decline, however, looking at the worldwide statistics, Android is a growing popular platform.
Strategy #2: Subscription to SoftwareThere is another strategy Microsoft is pushing - subscriptions. Office 365 Personal - the yearly subscription to Microsoft's Office for one user, is a fully encompassing service. Offered for $6.99 per month, it's designed to accomodate it's current userbase for less than the cost of using Netflix. For the corporate world, they are offering a business package for $12.50 per month per user which covers all of their major desktop applications and provides email accounts, web hosting, online versions of their desktop applications, and file sharing.
The subscription model for desktop application is becoming increasingly popular. Adobe recently adopted this suite for their line of products. Software corporations are starting to realize a simple concept: the subscription model works better.
Next Step: Simplified PricingCurrently Microsoft has multiple pricing schemes. Ranging from Student, Business and Professional editions of Office and an ala carte option per application. Then there's the Windows 8.1 edition with regular, upgrade to Windows 8.1 Pro, standalone Pro version. In fact, this seems to be the norm for Microsoft when it comes to pricing. SQL Server, Project 2013, SharePoint and many more have the complex pricing policies.
Maybe Satya Nadella needs to take a page out of Steve Job's playbook. Simplify the pricing and product mix and it will directly increase adoption across the user base. There are two distinct product mixes available to Microsoft, standalone applications and subscription based. Instead of splitting into regular and pro lines, the focus to be towards a single lineup -- preferably the Pro line. An argument can be made that students might not need the additional software on the pro line, but exposure to it is often the reason that they will use it in the future.