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Microsoft has “come a long way in the past year”

29 Nov 2012

Microsoft held a shareholder meeting in Seattle this morning, with CEO Steve Ballmer sharing numbers and business updates as the company nears the end of 2012.

On the Microsoft Blog website, the software manufacturer has published the "12 fast facts" from the meeting, with the main talking points below.

Microsoft shareholder meeting:• 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.

Corporate vice president, corporate communications Frank Shaw offered a few bonus facts also, which included:

• 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.

• Our Server & Tools division now includes six $1 billion businesses.

After detailing how Microsoft as a business is performing, Ballmer concluded his talk by saying:

“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," he said.

"We’ve come a long way in the past year, and I could not be more excited for what’s ahead.”

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