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Apple is a Microsoft OEM

"Jason, don’t your hands burst into flames when you touch an Apple product?"

I remember the giggles in the room years ago when a customer would bring a Mac into a Microsoft meeting. I have to admit, I was that guy a few years ago before I joined Microsoft. This practice, the giggling, still happens from time to time.

Today, I use a PC about 90% of the time. My primary desktop PC with dual monitors is running Windows. My Surface Pro 3 is running windows. Even my MacBook Pro has Windows installed in Parallels. I feel at home on Windows. It’s where I grew up.

Still, I get looks of shock when I bring a Mac into a customer meeting. I’m sure the reactions are just a holdover from a bygone era, but I feel compelled to explain myself.

I’ll often get questions from other Microsoft employees. "Is that allowed?". Interestingly, they’ll have a Lenovo, HP, Dell, etc. But the way I see things, we’re all just using an OEM for our hardware . If you’re not using a Microsoft Surface device, you purchased a device that Microsoft does not manufacture. The last time I checked, Microsoft was still a software company. The Surface Pro/Book is a demonstration of the state of the art.

Microsoft != Windows

Microsoft Azure was renamed from Windows Azure. The reason? It has no connection to Windows. It’s great for Linux. Even Windows is great at Linux now. SQL Server runs on Linux. Office runs on Mac. You can use SharePoint from any device. Visual Studio Code runs on Mac and Linux.

Windows is just one great product that Microsoft makes. I happen to prefer it over OSX.

I’m of the opinion that this can be extended to products like the iPhone, Android, and various watches. Microsoft has an impressive lineup of apps on iPhone and Android, many of them best in class. I can still edit my Office documents regardless of my phone OS.

My OS choice has been decoupled from my application and services choice.

When I bring my Mac into a meeting and I’m developing my next Azure application in Visual Studio Code, reading my email in Outlook, and creating spreadsheets in Excel, I no longer understand why my Apple laptop running all Microsoft software is all that interesting.

Use what you like, and remember that the world has changed.

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