In a recent internal memo, Microsoft (NSDQ: MSFT) CEO Steve Ballmer discussed the various threats to the company, including the surging Apple (NSDQ: AAPL). In its just-filed 10-K, Microsoft introduces a new risk factor that wasn’t there last year: “A competing vertically-integrated model, in which a single firm controls both the software and hardware elements of a product, has been successful with certain consumer products such as personal computers, mobile phones and digital music players. We also offer vertically-integrated hardware and software products; however, efforts to compete with the vertically integrated model may increase our cost of sales and reduce operating margins.” There’s obviously just one company they could be talking about there.
— Acquisitions: Altogether for its FY08, Microsoft acquired 21 companies. Excluding its purchases of aQuantive, FAST and Danger, the company made 18 acquisitions totaling $1.3 billion. Conversely in FY07, Microsoft made 13 acquisitions totaling $1.34 billion, so FY08 was fare more acquisitive, even excluding the big three. Added: There are a few reports pointing out how Microsoft confirmed the rumored price tag of $500 million on the Danger acquisition. True, but that was confirmed in its last 10-Q.
— Yahoo: Surprisingly little about Yahoo (NSDQ: YHOO). The filing offers a short summary of what happened that goes something like: We tried to buy ‘em, then we tried a partial deal. Both failed.
— Entertainment: It’d be nice to get more precise Zune data, but the company says that between Zune and Mediaroom (IPTV) revenue increased 65 percent or $539 million, primarily the result of the Zune launch.