The Battle for the Desktop Just Went Airborne

B. Shimmin
B. Shimmin

Summary Bullets:

  • With enterprise users taking their documents on the road, Microsoft’s longstanding desktop productivity dominance has never looked so promising and so vulnerable.
  • Google’s acquisition of mobile-savvy productivity tools vendor QuickOffice promises to put the company on a much closer competitive trajectory opposite its primary collaboration rival, Microsoft.

Google’s surprise acquisition this week of productivity vendor QuickOffice has restored my faith in the company’s ability and desire to do combat with Microsoft on its home turf: the desktop.  That is, the desktop as we are beginning to understand it as a highly mobile, cloud-savvy, social platform.  For those still wondering what that might be, here is a hint.  The desktop of the near future is a tablet device like the Apple iPad and the Samsung Galaxy Tab.  The trouble for Google, of course, is that the Web search powerhouse has heretofore maintained steadfast devotion to what I’m sure its engineers would refer to as ‘the pure Web experience,’ a platform where everything lives in the cloud.  That vision is best exemplified in the company’s recently reinvigorated smart terminal project (Chromebooks and Chromeboxes), which promises a utopian situation for IT professionals by hoisting everything, even the desktop itself, into the cloud. Continue reading “The Battle for the Desktop Just Went Airborne”