Microsoft has a plan.
The sleeping giant in Redmond, Washington is beginning to stir. It didn’t even let out a yawn when Apple released the iPad. That’s because much of the device’s early attention was consumer-focused. Things have changed.
With the iPad starting to catch on in a very big way with enterprises, Microsoft has finally acknowledged it missed the boat on tablet computing. Now it intends to fight back.
According to a lengthy PowerPoint presentation, entitled “Microsoft Commercial Slate PCs,” the company is offering its own plans for tablet computing. It has one goal in mind: to slow the growth of iPad usage in the workplace.
The presentation, which has been published by ZDNet, boils down to two points. One, the iPad doesn’t offer the security necessary in an enterprise environment. Two, Windows offers the best choice across all spectrums. In other words, its OS works everywhere.
It isn’t surprising that Microsoft is emphasizing security and compatibility. This is often its one-two punch whenever it tries to differentiate itself from Apple.
But, isn’t this getting old, and missing the point?
Isn’t Windows the OS, which requires anti-virus software to thwart outside attacks? Hasn’t the advent of apps made the issue of “compatibility” moot, at best?
It isn’t the OS, Microsoft, but the apps.
The iPad is many things to different people. While Apple is often criticized for offering a “closed” operating system, this hasn’t stopped thousands of third party developers from making a huge amount of money in the App Store. And, these apps do everything, from giving us cool games to play; to helping us create and send documents to our DropBox accounts. Some apps let us save files as Microsoft Word or Excel documents. The list goes on and on.
Microsoft is bogged down emphasizing the virtues of Windows. For the most part, they won that game. At this point it doesn’t really matter.
Apple created iOS exclusively for its mobile devices. In doing so, it understood the differences between a mobile device and a desktop. Apple’s iOS is easy for everyone to use.
Try saying that about using Windows 7 on a tablet.
Competition is always good, but until Microsoft understands the rules of the game, Apple will continue to lead.