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Consumerization Quotes: A 'bizarre' week for Google vs. Microsoft

Google Docs and Microsoft Office made headlines as the battle over mobile and cloud productivity apps raged this week, spurring lots of interesting comments.

The productivity apps war heated up this week, as Microsoft’s mobile Office strategy came into focus and Google made a big move to improve Google Docs.

Mobility and cloud computing are changing how people use Office and its competitors, and vendors are scrambling to capitalize. This week’s Consumerization Quotes offer some insight into these moves, as well as comments on mobile document management and a new problem for Research in Motion (RIM).

“It’s puzzling, bizarre and a step backwards.”
Bob Egan, founder, the Sepharim Group

Egan’s talking about Google’s purchase of Quickoffice, which makes native mobile productivity applications. With this acquisition, Google Docs offline access will become a reality, and that doesn’t totally mesh with Google’s focus on cloud applications.

“Why would anyone buy a Windows device if they could buy an iPad with Office on it for Christmas?”
A source familiar with Microsoft’s Office strategy

Microsoft has Office for iPad ready to go but won’t release it until next year. Windows RT tablets will be the first mobile devices to run Office natively, and Microsoft hopes that will boost sales during the holiday shopping season. Others, however, think releasing Office 15 for Windows devices first will backfire, and the longer iPad users don’t have Office, the more they’ll realize they don’t need it.

“We were basically just throwing records and files in a box and ignoring them.”
Patrick Gray, database applications analyst, Wichita Falls, Texas

That’s the way things worked before the city of Wichita Falls adopted Laserfiche, a content management system. Laserfiche and other mobile document management systems are catching on because they let users access files on the go but make it easier for IT to store and control access to these files.

“Clearly this stuff isn’t selling.”
Neeraj Monga, analyst, Veritas Investment Research

Monga’s referring to BlackBerry smartphones and PlayBook tablets, which are piling up in RIM’s warehouses. The company has more than $1 billion worth of unsold devices stockpiled, according to Bloomberg. And the problem will likely get worse as customers either await the next-generation BlackBerry 10 devices, or they grow tired of waiting and turn to iOS or Android.

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