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If you’re a salesperson for an on-premises information management platform, you’ve got a problem. Apps.
Those damn apps give too much power to the users and now IT departments aren’t spending their money on your system. You have spent years building up your robust and perfect system that has every feature and configuration setting imaginable. What could go wrong?
IT guy, rejoice! We’ve added more features and whatever you want to do, you can do with our platform... just pay the ongoing maintenance fee and I’ll send you this year’s model...
Wait, what? You’re not renewing? You chose what as your new system!?
There’s an adage that you’re going to want to remember right now, but it’s going to be a tough pill to swallow... If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em.
Microsoft seems to get this.
They’ve got SharePoint and now they’ve got SkyDrive, ok, they’ve had SkyDrive, but now they’re integrating with SharePoint. SkyDrive is a cloud repository primarily for file sharing and online storage and they literally name Apple iCloud, Google Drive, and Dropbox in their messaging as points of comparison. The funny thing is, SkyDrive was started as a consumer product, not an enterprise product. What’s going on here?
Why would Microsoft want to have SkyDrive? If you think about it, isn’t this what SharePoint and Office365 have already promised us that it would do?
Yes, but it comes down to this, SharePoint won’t ever have a shiny free icon on your iPhone, iPad, Android, or Windows 8 device. SkyDrive does.
Microsoft knows that if it doesn’t get a strong consumer footprint that in this insane BYOD (bring your own device) culture that it has the potential to lose ground in the enterprise. That’s how strong the appification of the enterprise is. Appification has moved the mighty giant Microsoft.
Microsoft is showing with SkyDrive that they’ve learned some lessons from Box and Dropbox. They’ve learned that a consumer product can quickly bridge a gap and become an enterprise product. They’ve learned that the consumer products that make the leap and become an enterprise product can take significant market share. They’ve even learned how the freemium model and iterative development work.
They’ve now got that figured out and they’re Microsoft. 2GB Free? 5GB Free? No, 7GB Free! We’re Microsoft! To the Cloud!
With SkyDrive, Microsoft is putting up their best defense against their apped-up competitors, putting up their best offense against their legacy platform rivals, and making a bold preparation for the future with a simple statement that I never expected to hear from Microsoft, “download our free app”.
So, back to you, how do you sell your platform? Guess what, you don’t. For better or worse, lately, a growing number of companies don’t give a damn about your retention schedules, disposition support, legal holds, or even their own information management policies. For better o