While this much is certain that Microsoft remains a leading innovator thanks to its impressive research and development efforts and an amazing portfolio, it is also true that the company has taken its share of missteps in the past.

And though Bill Gates is not doing day-to-day work at Microsoft, he is still involved closely with a lot of things the company is doing or planning to do.

While he maintains that a lot of bright things have happened at Microsoft under Steve Ballmer’s leadership, the former CEO is not satisfied when it comes to how Redmond is innovating.

In an interview with CBS News, Gates said that Microsoft’s debut in the modern mobile world is no way near impressive, as the company expected to attain leadership soon after release of the new platform:

“But is — is it enough? No, he and I are not satisfied that in terms of, you know, breakthrough things, that we’re doing everything possible. We didn’t miss cell phones, but the way that we went about it didn’t allow us to get the leadership. So it’s clearly a mistake”.

In essence, Microsoft should be targeting innovation beyond Windows 8 and Surface tablets, and release more breakthrough products.

Talking about how Steve Ballmer is running things as head of the company, Gates noted:

“Well, he and I are two of the most self-critical people — you can imagine. And here were a lot of amazing things that Steve’s leadership got done with the company in the last year. Windows 8 is key to the future, the Surface computer. Bing, people are seeing as a better search product, Xbox.”

So did he drop any hints on future products from the company? Afraid not, as Gates remained tight-lipped on this front. But this much is pretty clear that the software giant has high expectations from its upcoming products.

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