Monday, February 06, 2012

Microsoft Failure

Once again, Microsoft has completely failed to understand their customer.

Today I was forced to have my work computer "upgraded" from Entourage 2008 to Outlook 2011. I put "upgraded" in quotes because, for me and my use it was actually a downgrade.

When I was first switched from a PC to a Mac (after years of trying to convince our IT guys that Macs aren't monsters from hell) I received my first taste of Entourage. In some ways I was disappointed and in other I was impressed.

Pros: It looked more like a Mac interface and less "drone" like. But, most importantly, it had a project center.

Cons: It didn't have some of the key office features that Outlook had such as "out of office" emails, voting buttons, etc. Rather stupid, but the project center made up for it.

Eventually Microsoft did add a few of the office features into Entourage and that worked all fine and dandy for me. In fact, the project center has been so incredibly useful, I've been able to ignore the fact that it was a Microsoft product most of the time.

But today I'm furious. Once again the stupidity and complete oblivion of the Microsoft developers has reared its evil head.

1. They removed the project center entirely. I have no way of seeing all related emails, files, and meetings in one handy place. If I want to find something I have to hunt and peck like the proverbial chicken.
2. Their Ribbon feature is completely ridged with no customization allowed. I'm one of those people who refuse to allow themselves to be dumbed down by Microsoft "wizardry." I turn off almost everything that can be turned off except spell check. What frustrates me about the ribbon is that out of the 17 icon buttons I only need 6 of them to be there and one of them would be better served as a drop down menu on the email line like they did in Entourage.
3. Every time I switch from another application to Outlook, I get the spinning wheel of death. The damn thing spends more time deciding what to do than doing what it was told to do.

In looking at some of what has been written about Outlook, they have done their best to improve the Outlook product. What they failed to understand, however, is the Mac psyche. They haven't bothered to get to know their target audience.

But then, why should I be surprised. One thing that Microsoft has always excelled at is ignoring the needs of their customers. They really don't care. Which is exactly why my personal computer is 100% Microsoft free and always will be.

No comments:

Post a Comment