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The Good, Bad, and Ugly for Microsoft Corporation (MSFT) This Past Week

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I’m a Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) shareholder, and after dealing with a few years of nearly zero return rates from the stock, I’ve been thrilled with the its performance year-to-date. The stock is up 28.72% this year, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average has risen just 15% during the same time frame. I’ve been waiting for the other shoe to drop and for the price fall back down into the mid-$20 range, but this week I read a few articles that will make me pay especially close attention to the stock. One article highlighted something the company is doing well, another mentioned something that was sort of bad, and a third compared Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) with an ugly mistake another company recently made.

So let’s look at the good, the bad, and the ugly for Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) this past week.

Microsoft Corporation (MSFT)

The good
My Fool colleague Evan Niu wrote about how Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) had overtaken Research In Motion Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) this past quarter in smartphone market share. Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT)’s push into the world of mobile devices and its Windows 8 operating system, which was built for mobile devices, has really paid off for the company. Evan pointed out that over the course of a year, Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) grew its mobile operating system market share from 3.8% to 5.6% as it rose to the No. 3 spot on the worldwide stage. During that time frame, previous No. 3 Research In Motion Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) fell from 5.3% market share all the way to its current 0.7%. The mobile market is a great place for Microsoft to continue to grow in the coming years, and it seems that is exactly what the company plans to do.

The bad
Microsoft is releasing a new gaming console in the coming months, but only in the U.S. in 2013 and not in the Asian markets until late 2014. Meanwhile, the Xbox One’s biggest competitor, Sony Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:SNE)‘s PlayStation 4, will hit the markets worldwide before the Christmas shopping season — and for $100 cheaper than the Xbox One. Giving Sony a one-year head start already puts the Xbox One behind the 8-ball, and it just adds insult to injury to have it rolling out $100 more expensive than the competitor’s device. Microsoft needs to reconsider its timeline for delivery in Asia and take a deeper look at the long-term value that each Xbox One sold will bring in. It might also want to adjust the sales price to bring in more of those high-value, long-term gamers.

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