Ed Jones works for Firebrand Training, a Microsoft Gold Learning Partner. He has worked in the IT training and certification industry for the past 3 years. He is a tech enthusiast with experience working with SharePoint, Windows Server and Windows desktop.
Speaking in the UK for the first time as CEO of Microsoft, Satya Nadella headlined a star studded list of globally recognised thought leaders including; Sir Bob Geldof, Jeremy Paxman and Dame Stella Rimington, as part of Microsoft's Future Decoded event.
The event, designed to discover, provoke and provide insight into an uncertain future shaped by rapid technological advancement, saw Nadella open up about his plans for Microsoft and his views of a mobile-first, cloud-first world where individuals and businesses are empowered by the devices that they own.
The Age of Mobile
With studies indicating that in 2014 the average European household owns 10 digital devices, this truly is the age of mobile. Mobile devices now outnumber people on the planet, even greater in number however are sensors which through the aid of mobile we can now interact with the internet of things.
Speaking on Microsoft's mobile-first, cloud-first ethos, Nadella said:
"To me, when we say mobile first, it's not the mobility of the device, it's actually the mobility of the individual experience."
Speaking of the sensors that surround us, Nadella talked about the emergence of new mobiles services made possible through the power of cloud computing in combination with mobile. Nadella went on to say:
"The only way you are going to be able to orchestrate the mobility of these applications and data is through the cloud… That's why the juxtaposition of cloud infrastructure and mobile experiences is where the world is going."
Take Hive as an example, through the power of mobile you can now control heating from your mobile. Geolocation allows you to turn off the heating when you leave, and turn it on as you are return home. All this enriches your experience whilst also helping to save up to £150 a year.
Today’s changing technology industry only respects one thing, innovation. An idea at the forefront of Nadella's plans for Microsoft. He went on to talk about how to facilitate innovation and change, talking about the the 3 concentric circles for any organisation to continually innovate and succeed.
- New concepts – a company cannot stick to existing concepts, they become outdated. New concepts are required to invent new ideas.
- New capabilities – these are required to support the new concepts. Nadella used Microsoft's example of their Cloud infrastructure and how this new capability in combination with silicon allow them to innovate.
- Supporting Culture – core to innovation is a culture that actively encourages and facilitates the act.
Empowerment Through Apprenticeships
Continuing along the line of empowerment through technology, Nadella went on to talk about the need for education and it's free access to everyone. He spoke about the importance of computer science being included within STEM education and the need to create opportunity for employment.
Here Nadella talked about YouthSpark, Microsoft's global initiative to create opportunities for 300 million youth by 2015. He highlighted the Microsoft Apprenticeship program which this year has facilitated the employment of 6000 UK youths aged between 16-24, providing education, employment and most importantly experience.
No Big Reveal
Satya Nadella's first UK appearance was quietly understated. There were no revelations, no new technologies were not announced nor worldwide technological revolution promised. Instead this was an intimate conversation introducing us to the new Microsoft CEO where we learned about his ideals, his motivations and his vision for future technology and Microsoft.
This may have left a few disappointed, but I along with the masses came away with a valuable insight into the man at the helm of a global technological super power now valued at $400 billion.
This article was originally commissioned by Firebrand Training.
Did you come to Future Decoded? We had a great time! What was your highlight? Let us know in the comments section below or via @TechNetUK with the hashtag #FutureDecoded.