Microsoft enjoys a huge (almost 100%) market share with companies that are using Microsoft Office compared to other applications. Although the Microsoft is king of the desktop market, Microsoft is moving to ensure that MS Office is more tightly integrated into businesses from the server out to the desktop.
Companies that just use Microsoft Office as a local tool are not utilizing the power of networked computing which enables a completely connected enterprise (be it small or large) within the business’ day to day office productivity applications.
ZD Net writes The server effort–which Microsoft is talking up this week at its first-ever Office System Developer Conference–helps the company in two ways. First, it helps boost sales of Office and other Microsoft server software, such as Exchange and SharePoint. But perhaps more importantly, once a company integrates Office into its practices, competitors will face a really tough sell.
“The chances you are going to switch out are pretty well nil,” said Directions on Microsoft analyst Paul DeGroot. “You have way too much money invested.”
Although Office has the majority of the productivity-software market, the company has continued to see encroachment from OpenOffice.org and other low-cost competitors–particularly in the public sector.
The first step in the effort was building XML tools into Office 2003 that let companies easily move data in and out of Excel, Word and PowerPoint. But for the effort really to take root, Microsoft needs developers to buy in to the idea and create applications that build on Office.