In a rare interview with CBS (via Reuters) Bill Gates said he was not satisfied with Microsoft’s pace of innovation over the past few years and the way it has been handling its early mobile strategy.
“We didn’t miss cellphones, but the way that we went about it didn’t allow us to get the leadership. It’s clearly a mistake,” said Bill Gates, Microsoft’s former CEO.
Hedging questions about Steve Ballmer’s performance, Bill Gates said that neither he nor Ballmer are satisfied with the company’s strategy.
“(Ballmer) and I are two of the most self-critical people I know,” Gates said.
“There are a lot of amazing things that Steve’s leadership achieved – Windows 8, the Surface computer, Bing, Xbox. Is it enough? No. He and I are not satisfied that in terms of breakthrough things we are doing everything possible.”
During the 13 years of Steve Ballmer being Microsoft CEO, the company’s shares have dropped by 45%, and his leadership has had its share of criticism from ex-Microsoft executive Joachim Kempin, who wrote about his time at the company, and David Einhorn of Greenlight Capital, who went as far as asking Ballmer to step down just two years ago.