Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) spilled a lot of ink promoting its WIndows 8 operating system, but early reviews were tepid. This follows closely with Microsoft's track record of having success with every other operating system. However, while Microsoft has weathered the storm in the past due to a lack of meaningful competition, it never had a $270 billion threat standing in its way like Google (NASDAQ:GOOGL)

When it comes to integrated operating systems across devices like tablets, personal computers, and mobile devices, both Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Google are significantly ahead of the curve. Microsoft may not be able to risk another flop with Google and Apple's cloud-supported operating systems on the line.

Austin Smith owns shares of Apple, Apple, Google, and Google. Jeremy Phillips owns shares of Apple and Google. The Motley Fool recommends Apple and Google. The Motley Fool owns shares of Apple, Google, and Microsoft. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.