Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Should Microsoft Buy Minecraft

With all the news about smartphones and smart watches, Microsoft wants to remind us that they are relevant, too.  According to the Wall Street Journal, Microsoft " is in serious discussions to buy Mojang AB, the Swedish company behind the popular "Minecraft" videogame, according to a person with knowledge of the matter." 

Yes, Minecraft has been a very successful game but for Mojang, just as Angry Birds is to Rovio and Candy Crush is to King.  And yes, Minecraft has had a much longer run than those others in sustained popularity.  But the consumer is a fickle lot and at some point they tire of old and seek new and different.  As for this moment, the video gamer is buying up Destiny according to publisher Activision Blizzard.  Does Mojang have more in the pipeline for Microsoft to engage in acquiring? 

And yet I wonder if this planned acquisition is consistent with their strategy.  It seems over the summer, the plan was to drop it content business to work on the cloud.  Xbox, while a nice business was rumored to be a possible spin-off and the future focus was cloud computing.  So where does gaming fit into that chart?  Is this the business that Microsoft wants to move into?  It just doesn't pass the smell test.

Apple Drops The 'i'

Yesterday, when I brainstormed some names for Apple's new wearable, I suggested that Apple replace with 'i' with an 'ap'.  Well I was close; they dropped the letter and instead took my ap idea and added another 3 letters.  The new product is called Apple Watch. Not so revolutionary a name but certainly one that the public will find easy to understand.  Unfortunately at a price tag of almost $350 and availability in 2015, we will have to wait a long time before we can actually get it.

Interestingly, Apple stopped with the iPhone and Apple Watch.  No mention of new iPads or new laptops.  But it is only early September and the holiday season is still months away.  My gut says another announcement in early November with releases of new iPads, new iMacs, and hopefully an update to the Apple TV.  Hey, we need something to buy this December.