By Claire Reilly

Microsoft has released its first quarter results for the new financial year, posting significant declines in revenues and income for the three months, due in part to a slowdown in PC sales. However, the company is banking on the upcoming launch of Windows 8 to pull it out of the doldrums.

For the three months ended 30 September 2012, the company posted an operating income of $5.3 billion, down 26 per cent on last year’s figure of $7.2 billion. Revenues also dropped year-on-year, falling from $17.4 billion in FY2011 to $16 billion in FY12.

"While enterprise revenue continued to grow and we managed our expenses, the slowdown in PC demand ahead of the Windows 8 launch resulted in a decline in operating income,” said Microsoft's chief financial officer, Peter Klein.

Click here to sign up for our FREE daily newsletter
Follow on Twitter

Despite the decline in sales of PCs, Microsoft’s chief operating officer, Kevin Turner and CEO Steve Ballmer were bullish in their hopes for the launch of the new Windows 8 operating system.

“The launch of Windows 8 is the beginning of a new era at Microsoft,” said Ballmer. “Investments we’ve made over a number of years are now coming together to create a future of exceptional devices and services, with tremendous opportunity for our customers, developers, and partners.”

Retailers can expect to see a large Windows 8 presence in their stores across a variety of hardware devices, with Turner noting that there were a significant number of brands that will be using the OS.

“We’re incredibly excited to be approaching general availability of Windows 8 and Windows RT,” said Turner.  “We’ve already certified more than 1,000 systems for Windows 8 from our hardware partners, ranging from the smallest tablets and convertibles to touch-enabled ultrabooks and all-in-ones to the most powerful desktop computers.”