Ballmer's 10 years with Microsoft and the Internet

A look back on Ballmer's Web achievements since Bill Gates handed over the reins

He listed his successes as a tripling of profits in the past 10 years. "Which, ultimately matters if you are CEO; that is kind of an important dimension," he said. "That is off a high base, so I feel pretty good about that."

He said 10 years ago Microsoft was not considered a serious player in the enterprise but that perception is gone today. "I feel good about that," he said.

"And I feel good that despite the hubbub of 10 years ago what was going to happen with Linux, with open source, and Internet and OpenOffice, we have done really well innovating and driving the kind of innovation in Windows and Office and Windows Server that has served us well."

Ballmer is also clear on the areas that perhaps keep him up at night.

"I wish we were a little further in the market and had a little bigger position in search, no question about that," he said. "We jumped on mobile early, and while we are in the mix we should have distanced ourselves from competition as opposed to just being in the mix."

With the popularity of the Apple iPhone and Verizon's Android mobile offering, and the lukewarm reception critics gave Windows Mobile 6.5 phones, the mobile challenge will likely continue for Ballmer.

Ballmer matter-of-factly said there are plenty of regrets, implying there is no time to dwell on them.

"Most of the regrets are 'hey, I wish we had done something earlier, I wish I had made a decision a little bit differently,' but mostly I feel good about the things there are to be proud about."

Those things, he said, include being well positioned for the future. "We are investing in some amazing things, and I think we are poised to continue to be leader of our industry, but a lot of competitors are vying for that as well."

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