With the yesterday’s worldwide launch of Microsoft Office Web Applications for the business customers, the cloud war is getting fierce. "A lot of people say we will see pigs fly before we see Microsoft Office running in the cloud," said Tim O'Brien, Microsoft's senior director of platform strategy. MS has proved them wrong & is betting big on Cloud Computing. The launch of Microsoft’s one of the most lucrative & successful products is a testimony to the fact that though MS is a late entrant its quite serious about the new trend.
Perhaps MS Office is one of the most popular products till now, consumed by millions of user around the world on a daily basis. Though there are many options, even today it’s difficult to think of a computer without MS office. Back in 2006, Google launched Google Docs – a product similar to MS Office but with a different delivery model – documents/apps accessed using a browser, without installing any software. Google docs has become very popular with the retail consumers but is yet to gain a sizeable chunk in enterprise market.
As per Forrester Research estimates, Google’s share (in %) in this segment is still limited to single digit whereas MS Office is leading the office productivity app competition with a comfortable margin, as 81% of businesses are religiously using MS office. May be the users are so comfortable & familiar with the omnipresent MS Office that they can’t think of anything else. Lately Microsoft realized this and has innovated itself to make its presence felt in in the web sphere.
The free to use consumer (individual users) version of Office Web Apps is scheduled to be launched in June. It’ll be available via a windows live account. Definitely the consumers will hugely benefit with the cloud war. Only time will tell who will emerge as the winner: though entering late in cloud-sphere, will the biggest IT giant specializing in desktop software turn the table in its favor or will it be the most innovative web company?
Only time will tell…wait & watch.
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