Developer's Perspective: Why Office 365?


Recently, I had an interesting conversation with an Uber driver at NYC. He was in his 40es, doing masters in computers science from New York University through online classes and a tech enthusiast. He told me about all the apps he has built for his 14-year-old kid and how he gives time for finding the next big idea when he's offline from Uber.

During my 42-minute trip from Queens to Lower Manhattan, we talked about a lot of things – Life, Atheism, Family, Constructivism, Startups and Meanings for survival. One of the things, which stuck with me was his innate desire and zeal to take every obstacle head on. He was a champion in all senses and he was a proud man. 

As an evangelist for Microsoft, I always look out for people who are into technology and enjoy learning it. I couldn’t resist asking him the big question: “Tell me the top 3 platform’s you are planning for your next application?” - He replied – iOS, Office 365 and Android.

I was stumped. Frankly, I never thought he will put Office over there. I delved deeper in finding the reasoning behind his answer. Truth be told, at this moment, I was happy with the traffic 😉

His reasoning behind Office 365 was amazing. Microsoft is a company which truly stands for 'Productivity' and I can't think of any other company which deserves to be the market leader in this segment. According to him, the large user base and enterprise customers are really big attraction to developers to build on O365 platform

Later, we talked about other things and he shared that he’s always thinking about a technology driven connected world where he can take care of his special child even when he isn't around.
He had an iPhone and he was using Wunderlist on it to remember all the things.

Later, I planned to write about Why Office - In my advent, I met various students, developers, IT Pros, TDMs and BDMs and jotted down their responses.

So - Why Office?

1. Loyal and Strong User Base - We have all seen and lived the shift in technology industry. For e.g. We saw the rapid transformation in mobile ecosystem, the era of palmtops and Symbian, the arrival of iOS and Android and who knows what's next! There has never been any company or platform which has stood out as long as Microsoft Office. No platform can claim 1 Billion user audience who use Microsoft Office day-in and day-out for their needs.

2. Large premium market - If we take case of Apple App Store vs Google Play Store, Apple trumps Google by 80 % in terms of revenue. And that's the biggest reason, we see some apps getting delayed for Android. Developers always look for platforms which offer better monetization capabilities. Microsoft Office boasts of a large user base of premium enterprise and consumer customers which developers see as an opportunity to effectively monetize their apps. With Microsoft Office, Developers can know sell their apps in 147 international markets or target to specific organisations. 

3. Full Office experience on cross-platform - Microsoft Office is a robust productivity application used by more than one billion users worldwide across multiple different platforms. Microsoft Office apps on iOS and Android exceeded 100 million downloads within just 18 months of launch on these platforms. Another great thing is the seamless experience of Microsoft Office across any platform. Be it Android or an iPhone - Microsoft Office is the first app every users installs in his phone. 

4. Microsoft Graph - One single endpoint to rule everything at O365Microsoft Graph (previously called Office 365 unified API) exposes multiple APIs from Microsoft cloud services through a single REST API endpoint (https://graph.microsoft.com). Using the Microsoft Graph, you can turn formerly difficult or complex queries into simple navigations. You can use the API to access fixed entities like users, groups, mail, messages, calendars, tasks, and notes coming from services like Outlook, OneDrive, Azure Active Directory, Planner, OneNote and others. You can also obtain calculated relationships powered by the Office Graph (only commercial users) like the list of users you are working with or the documents trending around you. Availability of such a broad set of APIs gives developer the advantage of building things quickly after identifying the use case.

5. Open platform for building - Build using any web language including JavaScript, HTML5, Python, Ruby, PHP, Objective-C, Java, and ASP.NET. Similarly, when it comes to IDE - Use whatever you want. The Visual Studio or any other IDE of your choice. Similarly, there is no restriction in terms of hosting your apps at Microsoft Azure. You can choose any cloud platform of your choice.

Apart from the above mentioned ones, I received other responses as well which were critical behind developer's choice for Microsoft Office and O365 platform. The Office 365 Developer Program is an enthusiastic and fast-growing community of developers, pros and amateurs, who are developing solutions on Office 365. Link: Office 365 Developer Program.

I have previously spoken at Future Unleashed about Office 365 Group APIs and blogged about the powerful Delve.

My talk at Future Unleashed - Office 365 Unified APIs.
My previous blog post about - Delve and 2016 Resolutions

Thanks for reading this blog post and I would love to interact with you on Office 365, Startups, Customer Experience among many other things. Feel free to tweet me @NowayHeCodes for any comments or suggestions 🙂


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