Microsoft's quarterly figures came in today pretty much as analysts had expected, with earnings of $6.4bn (£4bn), down from $6.4bn in the previous year, and revenues of $21.46bn (£13.6bn), a three per cent increase year on year, according to a report.
The strongest-performing divisions were: the Windows Division, which posted revenue figures of $5.88bn, a 24 per cent year-on-year increase; the Server & Tools Division, up nine per cent at $5.2bn; and the Online Services Division - $869m, an 11 per cent year-on-year rise.
On the downside, the Business Division was down 10 per cent on the year ($5.69bn) and Entertainment and Devices Division revenues dropped 11 per cent to $3.77bn.
The most eagerly awaited of these results was that for the Windows Division. Following a lukewarm reception for Micosoft's new operating system, analysts and investors were eager to find out how this would translate into financial figures. The 24 per cent rise is stronger than many had anticipated.
Microsoft insists it has licensed more than 60 million copies of Windows 8 since its launch on 26 October, which would be very similar to equivalent sales figures for Windows 7 following its release on 22 October 2009, albiet at a lower market share given the proliferation of devices since then.
Notable by its absence in the exhuberant earnings report, though, was any mention Microsoft's own tablet - the Surface. The Surface Pro, a more powerful version then the currently available RT with the full version of Windows 8, will be launched in the US and Canada on 9 February.
Investor reactions to the latest figures were muted. Microsoft shares were down two per cent in after-hours trading.
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