Microsoft is now a services and devices company, meaning it is delivering its services and apps to all platforms - not only its own. Heck, I bought the Microsoft Band over the weekend, and not only does it work with Windows Phone, but iOS and Android. In other words, the company is delivering on its services and devices mantra.
Having cross-platform apps is great, but you have to convince consumers to install them. With that said, it is much more preferable to have apps pre-installed on devices, which can make the consumer more likely to use them. Microsoft convinced Samsung to install some of its apps on the upcoming Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge; a major score for the company. Today, it announces that the partnership is expanding to even more of Samsung's Android devices.
"Microsoft Corp. and Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. have expanded their global partnership to bring Microsoft mobile productivity services to more consumers and business customers. Samsung is planning to pre-install Microsoft services and apps on its portfolio of Android devices and will deliver secured mobile productivity for businesses through a new Microsoft Office 365 and Samsung KNOX Business Pack," says Microsoft.
The company further explains, "businesses that purchase devices through Samsung's business-to-business sales channels will have access to three versions of Office 365 - Business, Business Premium and Enterprise - coupled with Samsung’s KNOX security solution. The bundle also includes a setup service from Samsung to help businesses get up and running with products and provides ongoing support".
"Our goal is to meet the ever-evolving needs of both consumers and business customers and give them more power to discover new mobile experiences. We believe our suite of premium mobile products coupled with Microsoft’s productivity services will offer users the mobility they need in both their personal and business life," says SangChul Lee, EVP of the Strategic Marketing Office, IT & Mobile Division at Samsung Electronics.
This is a brilliant move for both companies; Microsoft gets a larger install base of its apps and services, while Samsung appeals to the enterprise by coupling Knox with Office 365. While Knox can be a headache for home users that like to tinker, it is a huge selling point to companies looking for security.
We should hopefully see Android tablets from Samsung with pre-installed Microsoft apps such as Skype, Office and OneDrive by the middle of 2015. It is not yet known how many devices in Samsung's portfolio will get the Microsoft treatment, but for both companies' sake, I hope it is a lot, if not all.
Do you like the idea of having these apps pre-installed on your device, or would you prefer not to have the handset manufacturer make that decision? Tell me in the comments.