Sunday, January 19, 2014

How Google is Replacing Windows (For me)

A few months ago I was finally due for a phone upgrade and decided to make the big jump from an Apple iPhone to an Android Phone (the Galaxy S4).  What I thought was going to be a simple switch ended up being a full switch to Google's platforms I've realized recently.  Not only do I have a phone with Google's OS, I now have a tablet by Google, the Chromecast by Google, and of course, tons of applications that I use by Google (just look at this blog!)  In fact, it's only been today that I've realized just how many products by Google I use.  Sending an email to another student?  Just so happens my school email is supplied through Google.  I want to watch a TV show with breakfast?  Chromecast is going to be the most convenient way to do so.  My laptop even has the equivalent of a start button from Google on it now.

While I'm using Windows 8, there's still a "Start button" thanks to Google.
The funny thing is, I didn't do any of this on purpose.  I just happened to end up getting all of these products from Google because they fit my needs exactly.  Why do I use Google Drive more often than Dropbox?  Because I'm usually on my email to begin with, and it's a click away.  Why did I switch to Android from an iPhone?  Because I wanted to be able to customize my phone more so.  At first, many of these little things seemed almost pointless, but as time has gone on, I've found that Google manages to just do things right.  When I need to bring a PowerPoint to class, rather than putting it on a USB flash drive, I can just upload it to my Google Drive, and then download it in class with a shortened URL from Google.  No big hassle, no issues with the URLs' changing, it's simple and quick!

Dropbox I'm slowly beginning to use more (as evident in the picture above), but I wonder if I'll ever make the full jump.  While Google does collect a lot more data, I don't really mind if it's advertising things I enjoy.  Even so, Adblock Plus manages to hide the majority of ads, so I don't really even have to worry about that too much.

With all of that said, there's still a few things I won't switch to Google for.  A big one is still of course my operating system (though they are pushing that very quickly).  There are too many programs I prefer to use on Windows than any others (Even Linux sadly).  On top of that, I still prefer Facebook over Google+ (Though that as well is slowly changing too).  Even for document editing, I still prefer Microsoft Office over Google Docs, though I don't think those are quite the right comparison.

While Google is slowly dominating my life, they still have a ways to go before I'd be willing to jump ship for quite a few products.  Maybe over the next year it will happen, but I'm still skeptical until I see it happening.