Tuesday , 25 September 2018
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IDG Contributor Network: Target, education: Windows S vs MacOS vs Chrome

[Disclosure: Microsoft is a client of the author]

This is a fascinating fight largely because the Education market, while not lucrative by any stretch of the imagination, is critical to assuring the future for any operating system.  People prefer what they have learned on and firms wishing to employ them find that not having their system of choice reduces significantly that firm’s choice of top talent.  The rarer your skill set the more likely it is the company will accept and embrace your platform choice.  Apple was initially one of the most aggressive in education; but Microsoft displaced them over the last two decades.  More recently, Google’s Chrome has been making impressive inroads into the segment over the last 5 years.  To a considerable extent, Windows 10 S is Microsoft’s latest and best attempt to stop any bleeding.   

Their latest announcement of 10 products that use Windows 10 S targeting education priced under $300 suggests Microsoft is ramping up their defense.  Let us talk about this fight this week and extend into the future of technology in education. 

Advantage of an entrenched vendor

People really, really do not like to retrain.  This is one of the reasons we still have keyboards which were designed to keep the keys in typewriters from fouling rather than far more efficient alternatives.  This means that once a platform is dominant, and the related skills learned, like Apple was with the iPod and Microsoft was with PCs, customers will favor that method. To keep those customers all that is needed is to prevent clones (like Windows and Android) and keep customers happy. 

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