May be, but it won't be evident in the next decade at least! As people say everything starts as a small spring. Maybe the downfall is imperceptible. . . But it is high time they start re-inventing themselves.
An interesting lesson from “Paranoid Survive". . . from which we can understand that there is a shift in the computer industry, Software is becoming a commodity. The fact is, the number of customers realizing that are on the rise. Customers now tend to pay for the service offered by the company, and not the software. This pardigm shift, could be hard to digest for B'Gates. Because they are no where in the services domain. . . as an outsider of microsoft, this is my perception. . .
Going forward, I would like to take the privilege of comparing Microsoft and GE. Jack Welsch, restructered GE, and gave a new management mantra. . . “If something is working then fix it. " When this was pronounced by Jack, it was widely criticized as a fallacy, which could lead to the downfall of GE. But look at GE now, because of his diversification and “vision" of the future, . they are the No: 1 in medical equipments. In the course of their growth, he had to make sacrifices to bring GE to what it is now. . . so what is thebig deal? Well! I'm not asking m'soft to completely change their path. . . but I don't see anything happenning. . .
In my humble opinion, any entereprenuer should not have ego. It is bound to kill the company! B'Gates seems to have more of it. . . he has to shed it and be humble enough to embrace change. The major advantage you get by shedding your ego, is the ability to get a kickstart from other people meme's (courtesy: Seth Godwin's Survival is Not Enough). To do this he has to understand the modern customer and “visualize" where the company should be in 10 years!
As I was writing this post, I rushed through B'Gates Business @ the speed of thought. . . and was puzzled to see that my thoughts about him are completely opposite to what I see in him in the book. . . that is an interesting twist to end with. . . will add more as I read it. . . .