Monday, July 12, 2010

Entelligence: Time for Microsoft to once again embrace and extend


Entelligence is a column by technology strategist and author Michael Gartenberg, a man whose desire for a delicious cup of coffee and a quality New York bagel is dwarfed only by his passion for tech. In these articles, he'll explore where our industry is and where it's going -- on both micro and macro levels -- with the unique wit and insight only he can provide.

A core part of Microsoft's strategy from days gone by was known as embrace and extend. With a reboot of their mobile platform due later this year, is it time for Microsoft to think about moving some of their services and applications to competitor's platforms? To some degree, it's already happening. Microsoft licenses the ActiveSync protocol which allows Android, iOS and other platforms to wirelessly sync with Exchange. It's developed Bing and Live Messenger apps for iOS and also done a deal to bring mobile Office apps to Nokia's platforms. One could argue that in some of these cases Microsoft has given competitors access to what could have been key differentiators for its own mobile efforts. I'm not sure I disagree with that analysis, but now that it's happening, I think Microsoft should think even more broadly about porting some applications and services. Here's what I'd like to see made available for other platforms.

Office Mobile
: Sure, there are other solutions for viewing and editing Office documents on almost every platform, but none of them carry the Microsoft Office brand. A version of Office for mobile (including a touch-enabled version of OneNote) would be an instant best seller on every platform and a become the de facto standard for mobile office applications. A combination of free document viewers and a suite of applications at a reasonable cost would put Microsoft at the top of mobile productivity and at the same time help continue to drive Office sales for PCs and Macs.

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Entelligence: Time for Microsoft to once again embrace and extend originally appeared on Engadget on Sun, 11 Jul 2010 21:00:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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