For the purpose of this article, I will be focussing on 3 ecosystems. Apple, Google, and Microsoft but this is true in general.
The first PC that I got was running on Windows XP and ever since that, I have been using Windows OS. A few years ago when I was in my college, I had to work on Linux and for the first time, I came to the point of switching an ecosystem. The transition was filled with resistance from my own mind which I subsequently overcame and went on to try multiple Linux distros and OS.
Since a long while, I have been asking and observing people on why they are sticking with a particular ecosystem and on a surface level they all had a very similar response. For example, iOS users mostly said that they can’t give up iMessage and FaceTime, Android users wanted their customization or hated iPhones for being too expensive and not worth the money.
At a deeper level, all the above responses are false or are a made up excuse by the fragile ego to preserve its sense of control over something. I know it sounds harsh especially if you have multiple reasons on why you absolutely need to stick with a particular ecosystem but that is your ego talking. We as a human species are operating on a much deeper level than this. We are fundamentally scared of change. Whenever something seems to question our sense of control or familiarity, our first response is always to resist it. But we can’t resist something without any reason so we tend to justify our resistance.
Why do you think we have multiple applications doing the same things among different ecosystems? Apple Maps & Google Maps, iCloud & Google Drive, Keynote & Google docs etc. They essentially don’t want you to try out some other ecosystem to fulfill your needs because if you end up trying something else, you might actually realize that you don’t have to entirely stick with them. In simple words, they don’t want you to explore and thus are racing to increase the ecosystem circle so you spend most of the time in it. Once the ecosystem becomes strong, you get loyal customers who will pay you more and agree with your decisions because they are too scared to face their own doubts.
More the person is dependent on the offerings of an ecosystem, harder it will become to come out of it. And the race between the companies is to increase this dependence.
If I had to give an advice to you, it will be to try out new things in all aspects of your life. The safety blanket which your comfort zone provides is the same thing which will keep you lousy and sleepy throughout your life and all the big giants are using this fundamental knowledge to trap you inside their ecosystems.
This article was probably a little harsh because it dealt with a fundamental layer of our existence and I apologize if I hurt your feelings while doing so. Thank You 🙂
Hello, I am Amit, A Computer Science graduate from India looking to explore the depth of UX Design and Human interaction with digital products. Feel free to contact me on [email protected].