Microsoft expanding Mac team ahead of new products

Posted:
in Mac Software edited January 2014
Microsoft's Mac Business Unit last week kicked off the largest hiring spree in its history as the group prepares to accelerate development of a new wave of software products for Apple users.



"The Mac BU at Microsoft is growing - we?re launching our biggest hiring initiative since the inception of MacBU eleven years ago," said Craig Eisler, General Manager of the Mac BU at Microsoft. "We are hard at work planning for products beyond Office 2008, and we are growing our team to help turn our vision into reality."



Microsoft's Mac chief didn't elaborate on exactly what those future products and directions would entail, though he did promise prospective hires the opportunity to work for the "the brightest, coolest, and most interesting business unit at Microsoft" where the "free caffeine, [...] milk and juice" will be ever flowing.



When pressed for details, a spokesperson for the Redmond, Wash.-based software giant would say only that the company expects to release new versions of Office for Mac every 2 to 3 years.



"We expect this to be the case with our next release," the spokersperson said. "We?re still the in early stages of planning and have nothing more to share at this time."



The Mac Business unit was originally conceived in the months leading up to Macworld Expo 1997 as part of a compromise between Apple and Microsoft. Under the terms of the deal, Apple agreed to bundle Internet Explorer for Mac on all the systems it sold in order to help Microsoft thwart Netscape's efforts to provide a true cross-platform browser.



In return, Microsoft agreed to pump $150 million into the then beleaguered Mac maker, cease threatening to delay Office 98 for Mac, and commit to developing new versions of the productivity suite for Apple customers for the next five years.



The pact helped the Mac BU quickly gain status as the second largest Mac software developer behind Apple. Although it would inevitably relinquish that title in the years that followed, the group today still bills itself as "one of the largest dedicated Mac software development organizations outside of Apple."



It's believed the Mac BU currently employs around 180 people whose products -- including Office, Messenger, and Remote Desktop Client -- combine to generate over $350 million in revenues each year.



Readers interested in additional history of Microsoft's relationship with Apple, as well as the origins of Office for Mac, are encouraged to check out AppleInsider's recent six-part series: Road to Office 2008.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 85
    mr. hmr. h Posts: 4,724member
    I hope they hire people who can write decent performance-optimised code and deliver a version of Office that's faster than the previous version instead of fifteen times slower.
  • Reply 2 of 85
    Perhaps this is a sign of Microsoft's desire to port their products to Cocoa. After all, it is known that Carbon will not become 100% 64bit capable.
  • Reply 3 of 85
    jgarjgar Posts: 1member
    Money for Mac?
  • Reply 4 of 85
    mchumanmchuman Posts: 154member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    where the "free caffeine, [...] milk and juice" will be ever flowing.





    I remember when I was in my 20s and used to think that sort of thing was cool. I'm SO glad I'm grown up now, rich, and don't give a shit about working 80 hours a week at a dot com with free soda and foosball outside my office. Get a life, people...
  • Reply 5 of 85
    bageljoeybageljoey Posts: 1,755member
    Anybody else wondering what is missing from this quote?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    Microsoft's Mac chief didn't elaborate on exactly what those future products and directions would entail, though he did promise prospective hires the opportunity to work for the "the brightest, coolest, and most interesting business unit at Microsoft" where the "free caffeine, [...] milk and juice" will be ever flowing.



  • Reply 6 of 85
    bageljoeybageljoey Posts: 1,755member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by McHuman View Post


    I remember when I was in my 20s and used to think that sort of thing was cool. I'm SO glad I'm grown up now, rich, and don't give a shit about working 80 hours a week at a dot com with free soda and foosball outside my office. Get a life, people...



    So, it was ok for you to think it was cool when you were in your twenties (aparently on your way to getting rich) but it is now something that only losers have interest in?



    A little too cool for ourselves, are we?
  • Reply 7 of 85
    backtomacbacktomac Posts: 4,579member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by JGar View Post


    Money for Mac?



    Publisher for Mac?
  • Reply 8 of 85
    tofinotofino Posts: 697member
    how about giving us feature parity with the windows version of messenger? i'm guessing they hired a bunch more people who are experts in bloat for office...
  • Reply 9 of 85
    DirectX for mac? or maybe even MSN Messenger client with working webcam!!!!!!!1!1!!!
  • Reply 10 of 85
    frogbatfrogbat Posts: 66member
    office for iPhone?



    + all of apple's new ms exchange integration might lead to more revenue possibilities for ms



    actually i'd like apple to offer a mobile me for the soho market - a 10-20 license version that can be used with your own domain - and then make headway into the exchange arena
  • Reply 11 of 85
    maguromaguro Posts: 65member
    Mr. H Language Police-



    Sorry to go off topic, but I had to comment on your tagline - I love it. Please address these if you haven't before:



    your/you're

    there/their

    then/than

    here/hear

    to/too
  • Reply 12 of 85
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Tofino View Post


    how about giving us feature parity with the windows version of messenger? i'm guessing they hired a bunch more people who are experts in bloat for office...



    Amen, brother!



    Cross-platform video chatting in MSN needs to be implemented. Not being able to video or audio chat with folks on a Windows PC after all these years is simply unacceptable.



    My two cents.
  • Reply 13 of 85
    typ993typ993 Posts: 3member
    How about if they get their current products (for which we've paid hundreds in upgrade fees) working in a satisfactory manner first before coming out with these great, new caffeine-fueled wonders?
  • Reply 14 of 85
    lantznlantzn Posts: 240member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by VertiGoGo View Post


    Cross-platform video chatting in MSN needs to be implemented. Not being able to video or audio chat with folks on a Windows PC after all these years is simply unacceptable.



    Yes very true. Although I was very pleased to finally be able to chat with my PC friends using iChat on the Mac and AIM on the PC. We do so all the time now. Because of this many have stopped using MSN on their PCs and switched to AIM.
  • Reply 15 of 85
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,219moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    It's believed the Mac BU currently employs around 180 people



    Including cleaning and kitchen staff no doubt.



    At the end of the day, no mater how many people MBU hire, they work for Microsoft and if they make the Mac version of Office better than or even equal to the Windows version, they are in trouble because it gives people fewer reasons to use Windows.



    The fewer people using Windows, the fewer developers making Windows-only software. Gradually the Microsoft monopoly erodes. They just won't allow that to happen. Our experience on the Mac with Office will be painful as it has been and if it won't always be the case, at least for the next 2-3 years.
  • Reply 16 of 85
    iveive Posts: 23member
    It's for the Microsoft Expression bundle and Silverlight.



    Nothing more nothing less...
  • Reply 17 of 85
    Am I the only one that sees this as a way better alternative to Apple and Microsoft competing with each other? It's nice to see Microsoft taking Apple seriously, wanting to work with them. it would be nicer if Apple finally dropped the jabs (even in good fun) and did the same, respecting one of their biggest partners despite the history that led them both to where they are now.



    Hello, I'm the 1990s, I'm dead. Please move on without me.
  • Reply 18 of 85
    nadynenadyne Posts: 6member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Ive View Post


    It's for the Microsoft Expression bundle and Silverlight.



    Nothing more nothing less...



    Microsoft Expression and Silverlight aren't in MacBU. Those are in other divisions of Microsoft. The currently-released applications from MacBU are Office (Word, PowerPoint, Excel, and Entourage), Messenger, and Remote Desktop Connection.



    Regards,

    Nadyne.



    Nadyne Mielke | user experience researcher

    Microsoft Corporation | Macintosh Business Unit

    http://blogs.msdn.com/nadyne/
  • Reply 19 of 85
    tulkastulkas Posts: 3,752member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post




    The pact helped the Mac BU quickly gain status as the second largest Mac software developer behind Apple. Although it would inevitably relinquish that title in the years that followed, the group today still bills itself as "one of the largest dedicated Mac software development organizations outside of Apple."




    So, who took over as the next largest Mac software developer? And is this measured in product sales or number of developers?
  • Reply 20 of 85
    leonardleonard Posts: 528member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


    Including cleaning and kitchen staff no doubt.



    At the end of the day, no mater how many people MBU hire, they work for Microsoft and if they make the Mac version of Office better than or even equal to the Windows version, they are in trouble because it gives people fewer reasons to use Windows.



    The fewer people using Windows, the fewer developers making Windows-only software. Gradually the Microsoft monopoly erodes. They just won't allow that to happen. Our experience on the Mac with Office will be painful as it has been and if it won't always be the case, at least for the next 2-3 years.



    Actually, Microsoft probably could make more money on the Mac than Windows, if they actually started porting more of their games and software to the Mac. Alot of sales of Halo 2, Halo 3, etc. could be made on the Mac. They probably make more money on MS-Office for the Mac than MS-Office for the PC, not in total sales, but per computer.
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