Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) has one of the biggest competitive advantages in the Cloud industry because of its Office 365 apps. Office 365 mobile apps are becoming a standard in the Enterprise world. Microsoft is now creating an ecosystem around these apps, and has bundling Azure Cloud services along with its productivity apps. According to an estimate, about 90% of the Fortune 500 companies use at least one service of Microsoft Cloud. Office 365 suite has over 100 million active commercial users. Microsoft stock has risen over 18% this year.
Microsoft Azure Cloud is also growing at a staggering rate of 90%, beating Amazon Web Services and Google Cloud. Office 365 growth has been explosive over the years. In the most recent quarter, Office 365 grew by 43%. Google and Amazon are now working on several productivity suites linked with their Cloud platforms, but analysts think that the two companies are late to the party. By contrast, Microsoft was quick to use its conventional user base of Office apps to get a strong hold in the industry. Because of the increasing growth and lack of competition, analysts think that Office 365 can easily reach the milestone of $10 billion in quarterly revenues in the next 3-4 years.
Analysts are also hopeful of Microsoft’s mobile segment, which has hitherto failed to grow due to bad decisions and tough competition. Microsoft is now reportedly planning to re-brand its Windows app store to Microsoft Store. Instead of Universal Windows Platform (UWP), which gives developers the ability to convert iOS and Android apps to Windows apps, Microsoft plans to launch Progressive Web Apps (PWA), which is platform for mobile web apps.
Mobile web platforms allow developers to make apps that people could use without downloading them on their smartphones. According to a report by analytics firm comScore, mobile web apps are growing faster than native mobile apps, because people prefer to use readily available mobile services instead of the apps that require full downloads. These successes make Microsoft stock all the more promising as an investment.