Yesterday, Microsoft announced the availability of Edge devices to iOS and Android to create a more seamless experience between your computer and your phone. But who cares? This transparent experience already exists via Chrome, the application you already use for everything on your PC.
Microsoft's Android integration is mediocre and nobody bites
Last year it seemed that Microsoft finally accepted that Windows Phone would be a flop. Instead, they turned their attention to existing mobile operating systems – Android in particular. With the update anniversary Microsoft announced the synchronization of notifications with Android via the Cortana application. This is fine (and we will come back to this later), but other Android integrations from Microsoft, which are slow to appear, are not as good. You can make Cortana your default assistant on Android but why should you when Google Assistant is so much more powerful? The Creators update introduced Shared Experiences but very few developers take advantage of it – Microsoft did not even add it to their own applications. The "Chronology" feature announced for the Autumn Creator Update has never appeared in the preview versions, and seems to have been delayed. Today, Microsoft launched Microsoft Launcher, a Google Now engine for less powerful Android, and Edge Mobile, which can sync your tabs between machines … if you are one of the 5% of users Edge
So, it's been a year, and the integration of Android "transparent" Microsoft is sorely lacking. Meanwhile, Android already works very well with your desktop through the most used application of your PC: Chrome.
Most things happen in the browser these days
Think about how you use your computer. Where do you spend most of your time? For most people, it's probably the browser: it contains your email, your calendar, your social networking accounts, the news you're reading, the videos you're watching and maybe even the documents you're looking at collaborate.
Of course, there may be some exceptions – graphic designers can spend a lot of time in Photoshop, and many office workers may need to access e-mail via Outlook or documents in Office. But more and more, the time we spend is focused on the browser, especially for everything that is cloud-based, which is the main reason for this "seamless integration."
You can not use a Chromebook, but Chrome is, for all intents and purposes, your operating system, the hub through which the bulk of your computer work flows. You can have some Windows applications like Photoshop, but these are the exceptions, not the rule: Chrome is your base, the platform for the majority of your applications. So if you want a seamless experience, just use Chrome on your computer and your phone's Google apps: the tabs you browse, the locations you've searched for in Google Maps, and the files you're watching. work can all be retrieved where you stopped.
Microsoft is trying to catch up, trying to make Android what Google has already done to Windows: Android and Chrome are so integrated that Microsoft's attempts are too small, too late. (And thanks to Apple 's walled garden, neither company will likely get the desired integration on iOS – if you want a homogeneous experience on iOS, you will need a Mac. )
What about things that Chrome does not?
There are, of course, some things that Chrome still does not do in native. But there are still better solutions than the slow attempt to integrate Microsoft with its own services.
Not all of your phone's notifications, for example, are synchronized with Chrome. Many of these services ( as Gmail ) may already have notification support in the Chrome desktop, but things like text messages do not
Fortunately, for all that Chrome can not do, there is Pushbullet: a fantastic Chrome extension that completely breaks down the barrier between your phone and your PC. It can transmit notifications from your phone to your computer (and allow you to reply to text messages), share the file and links between devices, share the text you copied, more . It may not be Google, but it's much better than Microsoft's mediocre attempt to turn Android into Windows Phone Part 2. (And frankly, it's surprising that Google's n & Not bought Pushbullet and made it official).
In addition, Chrome always adds new features. The Google Wizard, for example, is more powerful than Cortana, but it is not yet integrated with Chrome on the desktop. However, they just added to their latest Chromebook and the Chromebooks often served as a test bench for the features that eventually arrive at Chrome. I am therefore willing to bet that we will see Google Assistant on Windows computers in the near future.
And if this happens, Microsoft will always try to get developers to create applications for the Windows Store that are integrated with Android. I know where I'm going to place my bets.