Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella talks mobile-first, cloud-first

The Microsoft boss says juxtaposition of cloud and mobile "is where the world is going".

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella has shed a little more light on the company's 'mobile-first, cloud-first' ambitions at an event in London.

Since his appointment in February, Microsoft has been moving away from the Steve Ballmer-era focus on 'devices and services' towards Nadella's 'mobile-first, cloud-first' vision. 

It's a complicated vision for a complicated challenge: smartphones, tablets and the rise of the cloud have been undermining the desktop for a number of years so Microsoft has been casting around for a way to stay relevant in a computing world which does not have the PC at its heart. That means embracing technologies that it might have previously competed with: Microsoft has just released a new version of  Office for iPad  and is working on a preview of  Office for Android , for example.

"To me, when we say mobile first, it's not the mobility of the device, it's actually the mobility of the individual experience," he said, speaking at the company's Future Decoded event in London.

Nadella said consumers are now surrounded with devices and sensors and the "richness of that compute fabric" plus cloud computing is making new mobile services possible.

"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."

Through this argument Microsoft's mobile investments — most notably buying Nokia's devices and services unit — can be directly connected to its cloud investments in the shape of Azure.

It's the first time Nadella, a 22-year Microsoft veteran, has spoken in public in the UK since taking over as Microsoft CEO .

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