Microsoft's smartphone jobs suffer as sales decline
Global tech company Microsoft will be forced to cut around 1,850 jobs in its smartphone sector, as popularity of the devices reaches a new low.
The company stated today that 1,350 of these essential cutbacks will occur in Finland, where the mobile arm of Microsoft - acquired from Nokia - began. Approximately 25,000 employees joined Microsoft at that time, but in 2014, Microsoft was forced to cut 18,000 jobs - mostly related to the Nokia acquisition - due to struggling phone sales. A year later a further 7,800 employees were laid off, and the cost of the company's losses almost matched the value of the Nokia deal. In comparison to such enormous cuts, 1,850 further job losses seem almost paltry.
According to CNBC, Terry Myerson, Executive Vice President of Microsoft's Windows and Devices Group stated in an e-mail to employees that the cuts were "incredibly difficult" but the company needed "to be more focused in our phone hardware efforts".
The purpose of the Nokia acquisition, overseen by the previous CEO Steven A. Ballmer, was to transform Microsoft into a heavyweight mobile contender for Apple and Google. This miscalculation has proven to be one of the most costly endeavours in the company's history.
In Q1 of 2015, around 2.5 percent of smartphones shipped globally ran on Windows software; by Q1 of 2016, the figure fell to just one percent. Since relinquishing its mobile business to Microsoft, Nokia has gone on to become a successful telecommunications equipment maker, although since licensing its brand to Foxconn, it still plans to release further phones under the Nokia name.
Microsoft's current CEO, Satya Nadella, plans to have the company focus more on apps, including Office, which runs on iOS, Android, and Google. Its furture smartphones are more likely to be aimed at business customers, who have shown the most interest.
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Intelliwave SiteSense boosts APTIM material tracking
“We’ve been engaged with the APTIM team since early 2019 providing SiteSense, our mobile construction SaaS solution, for their maintenance and construction projects, allowing them to track materials and equipment, and manage inventory.
We have been working with the APTIM team to standardize material tracking processes and procedures, ultimately with the goal of reducing the amount of time spent looking for materials. Industry studies show that better management of materials can lead to a 16% increase in craft labour productivity.
Everyone knows construction is one of the oldest industries but it’s one of the least tech driven comparatively. About 95% of Engineering and Construction data captured goes unused, 13% of working hours are spent looking for data and around 30% of companies have applications that don’t integrate.
With APTIM, we’re looking at early risk detection, through predictive analysis and forecasting of material constraints, integrating with the ecosystem of software platforms and reporting on real-time data with a ‘field-first’ focus – through initiatives like the Digital Foreman. The APTIM team has seen great wins in the field, utilising bar-code technology, to check in thousands of material items quickly compared to manual methods.
There are three key areas when it comes to successful Materials Management in the software sector – culture, technology, and vendor engagement.
Given the state of world affairs, access to data needs to be off site via the cloud to support remote working conditions, providing a ‘single source of truth’ accessed by many parties; the tech sector is always growing, so companies need faster and more reliable access to this cloud data; digital supply chain initiatives engage vendors a lot earlier in the process to drive collaboration and to engage with their clients, which gives more assurance as there is more emphasis on automating data capture.
It’s been a challenging period with the pandemic, particularly for the supply chain. Look what happened in the Suez Canal – things can suddenly impact material costs and availability, and you really have to be more efficient to survive and succeed. Virtual system access can solve some issues and you need to look at data access in a wider net.
Solving problems comes down to better visibility, and proactively solving issues with vendors and enabling construction teams to execute their work. The biggest cause of delays is not being able to provide teams with what they need.
On average 2% of materials are lost or re-ordered, which only factors in the material cost, what is not captured is the duplicated effort of procurement, vendor and shipping costs, all of which have an environmental impact.
As things start to stabilise, APTIM continues to utilize SiteSense to boost efficiencies and solve productivity issues proactively. Integrating with 3D/4D modelling is just the precipice of what we can do. Access to data can help you firm up bids to win work, to make better cost estimates, and AI and ML are the next phase, providing an eco-system of tools.
A key focus for Intelliwave and APTIM is to increase the availability of data, whether it’s creating a data warehouse for visualisations or increasing integrations to provide additional value. We want to move to a more of an enterprise usage phase – up to now it’s been project based – so more people can access data in real time.