Compared to the turbulent 2009 that saw Microsoft's first widespread layoffs and its worst quarterly revenue earnings ever, 2010 was smooth sailing.
But anything short of death would be smooth sailing compared to 2009.
2010 was still a year of highs and lows for the software giant. The big wins were in gaming with the release of Nintendo Wii competitor Kinect, Microsoft's motion technology that sold 2.5 million units in its first month. Windows 7 adoption also remained steady, as Windows XP-weary enterprises began buying new PCs and migrating existing ones to Windows 7.