Steve Ballmer: Hardware is an Important Part of the Future

Former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer said hardware will pave the wave for Microsoft’s future success.

In an interview on FOX Business Network’s Cavuto: Coast-to-Coast, Ballmer said he was proud for his instrumental role in the launch of the first-generation Surface, a hybrid tablet computer originally released in 2012.

“It’s one of the things I am really proud about was getting the muscle really working so that the company could do hardware. Because I do think it’s an important part of the future. I love the way the Surface has now emerged,”  he said.

Ballmer, who ran the company as CEO from 2000-2014, said it Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) is may be returning to focusing on developing more hardware.

“The thing that I was pretty clear about when I was working there was we [the company] absolutely had to be in the hardware business and as you noted, we’ve been in Xbox for a while but it wasn’t really a general purpose capability. So, Surface and then phones, it sounds like they are taking a different kind of cut at it just from what I read from the press,” he said.

When he is not cheering on the Los Angeles Clippers NBA team as an owner, Ballmer said he continues to root for Microsoft as a share owner and occasionally comes across his former colleagues.

“When I first left Microsoft, maybe I had some value to add as transition occurred. But I told Satya [Microsoft CEO] before we actually did the formal handoff, you should just know, ex CEOs are really out of date in about six months, year max,” Ballmer said.