Cross platform, or the ability for one application to work identically on another platform (e.g. Windows and Mac) and even sync with each other, has been with us for a long time. However, it really has never had its day in the sun. Rather, other things had to fall into place for this to take on new importance and significance.
The Era of the Apple Ecosystem
Nothing seems more discussed of late than the Apple ecosystem. This is Apple’s set of technologies which are all able to work with and talk to each other. It brought with it amazing things such as the ability to stream our music all around the house or watch a movie purchased on our Mac and played seamlessly on our AppleTV.
No where was the ecosystem of more importance than on our devices that we worked with. Within the Mac ecosystem, data residing on one platform, say your Mac,I could also equally reside on your iPad and iPhone. This removed nothing more annoying that the old re-enter the data system from one spot to another. Like magic, the data just ended up everywhere. This capability is now a fine art and something of great importance to Apple.
Cross-Platform Returns with more importance than Ever
With Apple’s tremendous success so too goes the potential of a monopoly something which is an anathema to the function of our current capitalistic society. Microsoft was re soundly put into place in the late 90s if not by North America then by Europe. This happened on many smaller scale events such as the entry of industries to compete in the monopolistic world of telecommunications.
There is a strong pressure for applications to cross platforms however, the need this to happen has never been so great. For the consumer this is both something beneficial and required from a competitive stance. Not everyone wants to own an Apple product. Business’ though need to continue to run regardless of what device is in the field.
Access to information has always been important through all the changes leading to modern society. That need for access greater than ever. Thus, the pressure to provide the information across platforms.
This leads to not only a robust economy but a liberated one in which, for whatever reason, a certain device works better for someone than another. The need to be able to use key applications across platforms is probably more important now for a variety of reasons than it has ever been.
Nobody wants to see any company not compete for a competitive edge but which most people will agree so too do few want a monopoly. I think the drive for cross platform will be embraced more full heartedly and will be heard in a resounding fashion as a strong need. Those that can provide cross platform will actually have competitive edge. Microsoft with its Office 365 is creating a competitive edge for itself which will benefit all.
Those that deliver cross platform will actually be providing themselves with competitive edge. At first, it will be just a push and something that is required. Eventually, it will be seen as a given. At some point, cross platform functionality will be taken for granted. We are far from that but certainly at the point where more and more companies are thinking about it and actively working to deliver.