July 18, 2013, 6:52 PM — A couple of side-by-side headlines in the news today got me wondering: Will enterprises stick with Microsoft as a mobility platform going forward, or will new entrants like cloud-based services gain the high ground?
With a big Microsoft reorg apparently in the works, it seems like as good a time as any to assess whether or not Microsoft and Windows will remain the corporate IT standard as more mobility makes its way into the working world. It's almost a given that in any big enterprise there is a lot of Windows penetration, from desktops to apps, that needs to be integrated into any mobile deployment. But is Windows a legacy system on the way out, or a platform able to evolve? I think the leadership and organizational changes in the works will have a lot to do with how that question is answered. What is it like at your enterprise? Are you still a Windows shop? Will that ever change?
If it does, it's likely that you may be one of the enterprises kicking the tires at the upcoming DropBox developer conference. It's pretty amazing to think that DropBoxadded 75 million users between late last year and now. I think that's not just a vote for DropBox, but for cloud-based services in general. A perfect storm of sorts (faster, more powerful devices, better wireless connectivity, etc.) has made using cloud services like DropBox a no-brainer for the types of people who "just want to get things done." Now that they've opened the door, will corporate IT follow and start developing apps with DropBox and other services' APIs? Will that be the start of the end of the Windows era?
Again, some of this (like always in the enterprise world) may take a few years at least to shake out. But the leaders in either direction will be starting their new journeys now. Windows or something else? Which is the right way to go?
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