Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer expects the Windows operating system to be "front and center" in the software maker's growth strategy despite a recent slowdown in personal computer sales.
Ballmer made his remarks during a Wednesday meeting with stock market analysts held near Disneyland.
The presentation gave Ballmer and other Microsoft Corp. executives a chance to persuade investors that the company hasn't lost its technological edge as Google Inc. emerges as the Internet's most powerful player and Apple Inc. shapes mobile computing trends with the iPhone and iPad tablet.
Ballmer is counting on the next version of Windows to help Microsoft catch up in tablets and accelerate personal computer sales. He also predicted a mobile version of Windows will make Microsoft a bigger player in cell phones.