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Technology

Microsoft expects Windows unit to miss guidance over coronavirus

Announcement follows Apple's uncertainty about March-quarter sales

Microsoft has not been immune to COVID-19, which is ravaging large swaths of the Chinese economy.   © Reuters

Microsoft Inc said on Wednesday it does not expect to meet its quarterly revenue forecast for its Windows and personal computing business as a result of the coronavirus outbreak, sending its shares down more than 1% in after-market trading.

The company said the remaining elements of its fiscal third-quarter outlook were unchanged.

"Although we see strong Windows demand in line with our expectations, the supply chain is returning to normal operations at a slower pace than anticipated," the company said in a statement.

Broad swaths of the Chinese economy have shut down or slowed because of the virus.

Microsoft is the second company in the trillion dollar club to withdraw outlook. Earlier this month, Apple said that it may not be able to meet its March-quarter sales forecast.

The software maker had previously expected the More Personal Computing unit, which houses Windows, to post third-quarter revenue between $10.75 billion and $11.15 billion.

Its Windows and Surface computers had been more negatively impacted than expected, Microsoft said in a statement.

The coronavirus outbreak, believed to have originated in a market selling wildlife in the central Chinese city of Wuhan late last year, has infected about 80,000 people and killed more than 2,700, the vast majority in China. (Reuters)

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