Apple – Sponsored by Microsoft Pie.
Of course that isn’t true, but it could be. In the last few days Microsoft has released some very well received apps for iOS. It started with My Xbox Live and has seen Kinectimals and SkyDrive follow.
Microsoft have had other products on the platform. Photosynth, Tag and the very popular OneNote, which has also had a big update.
But this seems to be the most concerted push into iOS from Microsoft to date.
What is interesting to me is what it signifies on their part. Now, My Xbox Live was originally an app available only on the Windows Phone 7 OS. It was a pretty compelling reason for gamers like me to actually get a Windows 7 Phone. Releasing it on a competitors phone seems to be a shot in their own foot.
When you think about it though, it makes quite a lot of sense. Microsoft have a well documented income from a lot of mobile platforms, most notably Android. They are set to make billions each year just from licensing fees alone. However, Apple don’t seem to pay them a dime for iOS. They have no real foothold with iOS.
The release of these apps and the future rumoured Office is a great way for Microsoft to remind people that they are still there. They are saying, hey – look at us. Remember office on your PC and how you struggle with the iOS alternatives – well, we are still offering products that will make your life easier in a format you seem to want. It also shows the non believers that they can make good mobile applications, just in time to see the push towards their latest platform, Windows 8.
If you look at it long term, which could well be the end game. Make sure that when Windows 8 comes out people know that they can produce usable mobile apps, something that they are not that well known for.
Whatever their reasons, be it to get as many fingers in as many pies as possible or just to create hype heading into the era of Windows 8, I for one am very happy to see these great apps being released on a platform that I use every day.