Microsoft has announced that it will spend $5 billion on IoT technology over the next four years. The research will have far reaching influences on each of Microsoft’s products including the Windows 10 Operating System, the Xbox gaming console and the HoloLens VR headset.
This announcement tails another last week which said that the company was prioritizing the Microsoft Cloud and Edge services and products over Windows. The Operating System was shifted from a product based model to a service based model in 2015 with the release of Windows 10 and tiny updates rather than full redesigns of systems were expected from then on.
The IoT model hasn’t been fully realized at Microsoft yet. Competitors like Apple, Google and Amazon have their own digital assistants as well but they also have self-made speakers tailored to get the maximum use out of the assistant. By comparison, Microsoft’s efforts don’t even match the half-hearted push behind the Bixby digital assistant from Samsung.
With this investment Microsoft’s plans to connect its various services and automate and optimize its products seems to be underway. Companies like Steelcase, Kohler, Chevron, United Technologies, and Johnson Controls are already building their services atop Microsoft’s IoT platform.