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Microsoft Azure Sphere chip for end-to-end IoT security from the Cloud to Network Edge

“MediaTek is a good partner [for Microsoft] to have for its Azure Sphere secure IoT chip,” said Laura DiDio, principal analyst with ITIC. “They will provide a Wi-Fi controller, the processor will run Microsoft’s Linux-based IoT OS and you’ve now got a highly secure, connected device at a decent price point.”

Channel Futures, April 17, 2018

Microsoft Reorganization:

“Microsoft has actually been moving away from Windows and more towards the cloud, analytics and AI for the past ten years,” explained Laura DiDio, an analyst at ITIC. “This did not happen overnight.” DiDio pointed out that Nadella has made major changes quickly during his tenure. “That’s the way you have to move,” to stay relevant, she said. “You’ve got to be agile to stay ahead of the game.”

The changes don’t mean that Microsoft is totally giving up on Windows, DiDio said. But they do mean that Nadella is focusing the company’s energies around stronger assets.

“They’re de-emphasizing Windows,” she said, in order to become a stronger “player in cloud and artificial intelligence, because that’s where the money is.”

CNN Money, March 29, 2018

Failure to deliver reliability and uptime:

“Time is money,” DiDio says. “Systems, networks and connectivity devices are subject to failure. If the downtime persists for any significant length of time, it can be expensive in terms of monetary losses. It can disrupt operations, decrease worker productivity and negatively impact the organization’s business partners, customers and suppliers.

“A security outage of any significant duration can also be a PR nightmare and damage the company’s reputation, causing lost business,” DiDio says. “Reliability and uptime go hand in hand with a comprehensive, detailed backup and disaster recovery plan that also includes an internal operational level agreement that designates a chain of command in the event of any type of service disruption.”

Every organization should have a disaster recovery plan that includes an itemized list of who to contact at vendor organizations, cloud and third-party service providers, DiDio says. “The CISO should also know what the company’s contracts stipulate as the response time from vendors, cloud, and third-party service providers to respond to and thwart security incidents and track down the hackers,” she says.

CSO Online, November 21, 2017

Cal State University and Hartnell College Launching Cohort Program:

“Since 2013, the two institutions have promoted this program as a way to attract minorities, women and students who are the first in their families to attend college to Computer Science and STEM subjects. The Cohort program nurtures these students by having them take their CS classes as a group.” DiDio says. It also helps them adjust more quickly to college life by providing them with group study and life skills classes to help them stick with CS as a major and graduate.

“So far, so good. A 75% majority of students enrolled in the CSUMB/Hartnell CS Cohort program graduate. This is well above the national average of about 30%,” DiDio notes.

ITIC Corp, November 17, 2017

Burger King Ad Creates Whopper of a Mess:

“In the Internet of Things environment, where you can have “an ecosystem or ecosystems of ecosystems interconnected, the attack vector universe is potentially limitless,” noted Laura DiDio, research director for IoT at 451 Research.

The risks are “everywhere, and what you can do is mitigate risk to an acceptable level,” she told the E-Commerce Times — but that requires vendors to make secure products.

E-Commerce Times, April 13, 2017

United Airlines Customer Service Snafus:

United’s behavior was “cavalier and callous,” said Laura DiDio, research director for IoT at 451 Research.

“The deck is stacked against passengers these days,” she told CRM Buyer.

However, this situation “is a PR nightmare for United Airlines,” DiDio added, “and it’s not going away.”

CRMBuyer, April 11, 2017

ITIC’s WIndows 8 Survey Data shows that companies and the industry at large is taking a “wait and see” attitude towards the Windows 8 Surface Tablet which Microsoft formally unveils this week.

Reviews so far have been mixed but there’s no doubt that this is Microsoft’s attempt to beat Apple at its own game in the tablet market AND one-up the iPad maker by delivering a tablet-like device that also has the power of a full-blown computer.

Hence, the mood is more cautious with respect to the Windows 8 RT Surface Tablet. This is Microsoft’s first foray into the tablet arena which is dominated by Apple’s iPad with 68% marketshare. Just over one third – 34% — of the over 500 ITIC survey respondents said their Windows 7 desktops were fine; another 24% indicated they’re already using the Apple iPad and are satisfied with its performance; 18% said other device purchases take priority and 16% said they were waiting to see how the Windows 8 Surface Tablet is priced. Ironically, only nine percent of survey participants said the Touch screen factored into their decision not to purchase the Windows 8 Surface Tablet. Interestingly, only 12% of survey participants said they would pass on the Windows 8 Surface Tablet because they’re already using an Android-based tablet.

Overall, 62% or nearly two-thirds of the respondents who have tested the Windows 8 Surface Tablet gave it a positive rating compared to 38% that found it ” poor” or “unsatisfactory.” Among the latter group — an overwhelming 87% of the 38% that disliked performance attributed it to ergonomics, e.g, they were dissatisfied with the built-in keyboard which is very sentisive and made them more prone to typing errors. Some also though it should have been a “bit lighter.”


Windows 8 appears to be a solid successor to Windows 7 in terms of performance, reliability, scalability, security. Additionally, Microsoft has pledged not to repeat the egregious mistake it made with Vista, which sorely lacked backwards compatibility and interoperability with many crucial third party applications. Nonetheless, even some Microsoft insiders privately acknowledge that the company would have been better served by holding off on shipping the Windows 8 desktop since a significant portion of businesses have just recently migrated to Windows 7. Microsoft has largely been mum on the issue of what users perceive as unnecessarily forcing them to use the Touch screen. Touch screens have long been a staple among Apple Macintosh users. But the Metro is and will be a jarring change for many corporate end users – particularly older ones. Microsoft badly miscalculated this issue.

The Windows 8 RT Surface Tablet is another story. In the tablet and smart phone arenas, corporations and consumers expect to use and in fact embrace the Touch Screen interface. But in the tablet arena, Microsoft faces two significant challenges to adoption: their names are iPad and Android. Microsoft is late to the tablet market where the Apple iPad has a commanding 68% market share.

Microsoft must craft a cogent, compelling marketing campaign and back it up with strong features, excellent technical service and support and an aggressive pricing model if it is to have any chance of being a serious player in the tablet market.


IIt is highly unlikely that Windows 8 will see widespread mainstream corporate adoption within the first year. Too many people and businesses have recently or are just beginning a Windows 7 migration. So Microsoft should use this time wisely and re-engineer Windows 8 within the first Service Pack to enable corporations and consumers to easily revert to the traditional Start button and bypass the Touch screen. This will mitigate much of the negativity and help to assuage the corporate concerns regarding the new OS. Microsoft should also ensure that its Windows 8 documentation and technical service and support are top notch and feature backwards compatibility with its own products as well as the major third party ISVs. Microsoft can’t afford another debacle like Vista.

Microsoft also needs to aggressively market the Windows 8 RT Surface Tablet and create a buzz that includes tangible reasons why . It is also imperative that Microsoft undercut Apple and Android-based rivals on pricing and deliver top notch service and support in order to gain a foothold in this intensely competitive market.

The bottom line: Microsoft has a lot to prove in the court of public opinion.

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