There are considerable benefits in investing in one platform for all your devices – the same mobile phone platform, the same platform for your tablet, your work notebook, and your gaming console. I have chosen Microsoft as my platform, and I will tell you why.
In a previous life, I had an Android smartphone, an Apple iPad, a Microsoft laptop, and playing my games on the Sony PlayStation 3. I thought life was good. I had all kinds of systems in place to synchronize content to the cloud and synchronize the content back to each of my devices. I would go to a customer meeting with my iPad, take notes, only to return to the office and not be able to work on those notes on my notebook. I first needed to synchronize the iPad to the cloud, and then synchronize the cloud back to my notebook. I thought I was being productive, but actually, I was not.
At the same time, I was buying the same apps for different platforms – especially apps needed for work between the iPad and the Windows notebook. I was paying twice for the same app, sometimes even three times for the same app on different platforms!
I sat back, looked at this craziness and asked myself – will my work platform change to Android in the next two years? Will my work platform change to Apple in the next two years? No, and no in each case. My work platform for the last… uhmmm 15+ years… has been Microsoft. I do not see that changing in the next two years.
Today, I have consolidated all my devices and apps into one platform. Microsoft!
I have a Windows Phone 8, a hybrid Windows 8 touch tablet/notebook, and Xbox 360 for gaming. In the process, I have eliminated one device – the Apple iPad – and vastly simplified my digital life.
Come to think of it, the Apple iPad is pretty frustrating to use as a business device in a world where our office runs on Microsoft.
I have even taken it further into the applications I use – switching from Dropbox to Microsoft SkyDrive and switching from Evernote to Microsoft OneNote (the text editor in OneNote is far superior to Evernote). The Microsoft Office tools are fully integrated into the platform, and SkyDrive is fully integrated into Microsoft Office. I have *even* switched from Google Chrome back to Internet Explorer! Yip, look at http://BrowserYouLoveToHate.com. This “Child of the 90’s” clip almost brought me to tears!
Everything works better together on the Microsoft platform. When I play games on my Windows Phone 8, those gamer points are added to my Xbox profile. The next time I fire up the Xbox, those gamer points are shared. My Xbox avatar (and gamer points) is the same on the Xbox and Windows Phone 8 and the Windows 8 Xbox Games app. One profile across all platforms I choose to play a game on. This is fantastic! In the old days, games played on the Android phone were disconnected from the games played on the iPad to games played on the PlayStation. Just think of that!
Office documents are shared via SkyDrive across all platforms. Tasks and to-do items created in Outlook on the notebook are seamlessly shared to the Windows Phone. Notes from meetings taken on OneNote shares via SkyDrive seamlessly across all platforms.
And the more time I spend, the more I’m switching – I’ve switched from Google to Bing for searches. The daily wallpaper updates from Bing Desktop are just awesome. I switched from Chrome to Internet Explorer. I switched from Google Picasa to Windows Photo Gallery etc and switched from Google Talk to Skype.
So, yes, there are risks in putting most of your digital life in Microsoft’s hands. I am willing to take that risk – Microsoft has been around long enough, I have been using their products for years, Microsoft is getting more things right these days, and so far… Microsoft remains consistently good.
It continues to amaze me how consumers make decisions on the devices they buy. Specifically, the platforms – the choice between Microsoft, Apple, Google and dare I add Samsung and Sony. If you are a digital citizen, give this some thought.