Microsoft Ads Demonstrate ChromeOS Concerns
Microsoft has released a couple of videos contrasting Windows 10 with ChromeOS for business and education needs, demonstrating concerns over the growth of Google's browser based OS and at the same time suggesting Apple's desktop offerings are no longer a concern.
The growth of Chromebook usage in the US education market is what has driven this change. Google overtook Apple to become the second biggest education platform vendor there last year. Success breeds success, especially in the education market and one school or college reporting good experiences with the lightweight platform will inevitably affect the buying decisions of others.
In business Chromebooks haven't been anything like as successful, however as school kids graduate into the workplace they'll carry their ChromeOS experience with them and I have no doubt that smaller (and some not so small) organisations will begin to consider the benefits of switching to Google.
That has major repercussions for Microsoft's strategy. Building a business in the clouds is a good strategy, so long as a strong wind isn't going to come along and blow it all away. Right now Google and ChromeOS are the big bad wolf, warming up his lungs to huff and puff the whole business model away.
Going ChromeOS? You'll probably want to buy into Google Apps rather than Office. Email? Gmail's got that covered and on-premise infrastructure, well we don't need that anymore. It's a risk to every one of Microsoft's business components: desktop, server and cloud.
So this ad is the first step in a battle for mindshare with ChromeOS. Positioning Windows devices as more secure, more capable and just as good value as Chromebooks in education. In business Microsoft will look to leverage the abundance of Win32 legacy apps which demand Windows, whilst pushing ChromeOS as a limited capability platform.