Microsoft has announced record sales for its fourth fiscal quarter, with profits jumping 48% year-over-year to $4.52 billion on revenue of $16.04 billion, a 22% increase. Sales of Windows 7 have remained strong, with 175 million licenses sold since launching last October and Windows revenue rising 44% to $4.5 billion.
The arrival of Office 2010 has boosted the productivity suite's sales up 15% to $5.3 billion, while Microsoft's server software group reported revenue of $4 billion, up 14%. It wasn't all pretty though. Acknowledging the failure of its Kin phones, the company said it would cost at least $240 million to write-off – and that's without including development costs, according to Electronista.
There have also been reports of increased tension in Redmond – not least because of the Kin debacle – and the company has recently lost or otherwise resituated various high profile employees. Although difficult to believe, rumors suggest there is even pressure to oust CEO Steve Ballmer within the next six to nine months.
Despite having its best-ever quarter, analysts questioned whether Microsoft would top Apple's $15.7 billion in sales for the period – it did, but barely. The rivals have been under close watch since Apple surpassed Microsoft, becoming the second largest US company by market capitalization.