Best Argument: Losing
Audience Favored: Losing (51%)
Developers remain a huge priority
Andrew Brust: From the early days of its C compilers and Visual Basic, to the introduction of the .NET Framework and on to Windows Azure, Microsoft has obsessed about developers, their languages and tools. And in the run up to Microsoft’s //build/ developer conference, it’s clear that developers remain a huge priority for Redmond.
Granted, rapid platform changes, secrecy around Windows 8 and Windows Phone, and a sometime tone deafness to what the rest of the developer world is doing have left egg on Microsoft’s developer face at times.
But the company has adapted to the new developer world, embracing the cloud and open source and contributing important new technologies to the developer community. Few give the company credit for such moves, because it’s much easier to stick to the old stereotype of the evil “M$” that’s hopelessly behind the times. In reality, it’s that very narrative that’s become obsolete.
It may not be popular to say so, but Microsoft is winning the battle for developers, especially in the Enterprise, and increasingly in the cloud and consumer worlds.
Developers need encouragement
Adrian Kingsley-Hughes: In order to foster a successful platform ecosystem, you need compelling "must have" apps; but in order to be able to attract the top developers to create those apps for your platform, that platform needs a big base of users.
That's the catch-22 facing any company bringing a new platform to market, and it is a problem that software behemoth Microsoft is facing on several fronts.
Microsoft, emboldened by the success that Apple and Google have had with their mobile platforms, chanced launching two new platform ecosystems in the form of Windows Phone and the app platform built into Windows 8. But the Redmond giant is finding that fostering a flourishing ecosystem is not just a matter of adopting an "if you build it, developers will come" approach.
Developers need encouragement, and a lot of reassurance, that their efforts are going to be rewarded; and so far, Microsoft is not achieving this.