Microsoft's youth cool
Microsoft the geeky, corporate dinosaur? That’s not how young people in the UK see it, as the brand has spiked to 87% positive sentiment in Voxburner’s latest Youth 100 ranking. Just 5% have negative sentiment towards MS and the brand topped its category ahead of cool types such as Apple and Beats. In fact, in separate Youth 100 focus groups Microsoft’s Surface tablet – by no means a top-seller – was cited often as an ‘awesome’ product.
The release of the Xbox One – MS’s first console in eight years – has done much to raise their brand profile for 18-to-24s, says James Read of Student Beans. In addition, the Windows 8-inspired tile interface has made using Microsoft’s operating system on tablets and PCs seem familiar to an even wider audience.
Also on the games front, Sony’s success with the PlayStation 4 has been a big return to form after PS3. Listening to consumers and learning from early mistakes in the previous generation of consoles, they undercut Microsoft on price and focused on core gaming function
And then there’s BlackBerry. “Once a smartphone giant appealing to both security-conscious business users and SMS-hungry teenagers, its popularity has dwindled, with only 23% of respondents expressing positive feeling towards them,” says Read. “The Canadian company’s once-ubiquitous messenger service BBM has been battered by the prevalence of Snapchat and WhatsApp. The announcement in late-2013 that BBM would be released on iOS and Android came far too late, and seems more like an acceptance of fate than a new direction.”