For at least the past two decades, knowledge workers have been firmly rooted in the PC era. Within enterprises of all sizes, that meant that the predominant operating system on the desktop – and often in the data center — was Windows.
We had unprecedented productivity gains during this time, no doubt, but I would now firmly assert that as Ray Ozzie suggested — and Steve Jobs was more than happy to reinforce — that we are transitioning to an era where PCs play a secondary role, if at all – this is the Post PC era.
I believe we will now have more access to more information on more devices from more applications than ever before.
It’s not as if PCs are going away, so what do we mean by the “Post-PC Era”? PCs have their place. They’re still useful business tools. But it’s clear: We are rapidly evolving from a predominantly client-server world to one in which the Windows PC is just another device in a broad list of options.
We now have many choices in devices – even the option to perform the same tasks on different devices depending on our preferences at different times. Everything is anchored by persistent services that enable device portability and mobility.
Once upon a time, I dreaded having to replace my mobile phone or PC. The transition invariably brought with it lost data, lost time, lost sanity… But I can now upgrade from one device to another fairly quickly without breaking much of a sweat. And I really need that ability if I want to keep up with the latest advances in technology.
Why is that? Because it’s cloud-enabled!
Although they’ve performed well for over two decades, traditional business tools and infrastructure based around the desktop PC and office-productivity software no longer exclusively fit the modern knowledge worker nor the global distributed form of 21st century work.