My ZDNet colleague, James Kendrick wrote, "Secret behind Microsoft iPad apps," but got it totally wrong. Sorry, James, but you're wrong on this one--way, way off, in fact. I know this because, like James, I started with Microsoft's earliest products including DOS, Windows 286 and so on. There's no need to battle it out over who has worked with their software the longer because there's no real contest--we both have our histories. It is my history with Microsoft products that allows me to say how far off base James' comments are.
"I believe the truth is a little more obscure, that Microsoft fears that the more consumers get exposed to alternative products on other platforms, the more they will desert the company’s flagship products."
First, Microsoft is a software company. It makes software for people to use. That is its sole purpose in life--to produce computer software.
Second, Microsoft is a business. Microsoft is in business to make money. Microsoft makes software and sells it to people and corporations. It makes money doing that.
Third, one of Microsoft's first commercial products was...wait for it...Microsoft Office...that ran on the...wait for it...MacIntosh. Crazy stuff there, huh? Nope, they're a software company that sells computer software to people--people with Macs, PCs, phones and tablets of all kinds.
It's pretty simple, really. No paranoia required or necessary. Microsoft isn't worried about anything--in particular, it isn't worried about losing marketshare for products that it already sells to the people that some believe would abandon them. That makes no sense to me.
Why would Apple users abandon Microsoft Office after more than 20 years? Good question. I'd love to hear the answer--or read it, as the case may be.
ZDNet's BTL, Larry Dignan, had a more realistic view with his, "Microsoft's iPad software barrage: Reality meets business savvy," where he states that, "Going forward Microsoft should go crazy on Android too. It should be on every platform that has a lot of users."
Yes, agreed. One more time, Microsoft builds iPad Apps because it is a software company that makes software that it sells to people with all kinds of computers.
End of story? We can only hope so.
I now return you to your Angry Birds game, already in progress.