Microsoft Is Evolving
I never thought I would be that interested in what Microsoft were doing; I try not to use too many of their products, but it has been unavoidable throughout the years. Sometimes, and at some points, I liked the products, but some of my favorite aspects of the programs got removed as the builds advanced. I made a choice to opt out of their software packages.
Microsoft & Changing Tactics In The Marketplace
Microsoft used to be ubiquitous, and they had certain corners of the market pretty much sewn up – computing was all about Microsoft. Apple was a little more niche. Android wasn’t so widespread. This was a while ago. Things change though, and in recent years Microsoft’s share of the market dwindled somewhat, and their image got more and more dented. Not many people were opting for Microsoft if they could get something else – whether that be Android, Apple, or some open source software. Microsoft has never been cool, and it actually seemed to get less and less so.
The way they are marketing themselves, and the potential markets they are opening by newly unveiled tactics have been getting as much, if not more column inches than the products themselves. Making windows that works on Androids is an interesting idea, and if it catches on, could redraw some of the battle lines as far as hardware and software go. You might like Android phones, but want windows, or if you like Windows phones but want Android software, might that now become an easier thing to do?
Shaking off the uncoolness, and that feeling you’ve been forced down someone’s throat (a la U2’s album on iTunes) isn’t the easiest thing, but it is achievable. It’s not like Microsoft don’t still make a hell of a lot of money, but they aren’t loved – which is what they want to be, apparently. You have to give people a choice, and not make them feel like they have to put up with you because you are there already. Aesthetically the new browser and some of the features that have been talked about seem cool; if Windows becomes cross compatible with different machines and allows for a greater inter-connectivity between devices then maybe it can become an interesting prospect again.
I wrote before about some hopefulness about the new moves Microsoft are making to give people what they want, and this seems to be another great example of building something from the user viewpoint up, which is a great place to start. It also suggests that Microsoft have recognized that the game has changed and they need to be a little bit more inventive in what they make and how they sell it. They don’t have a captive market in the way they did before, so exploring new frontiers by increasing their flexibility could well be a genius move.