As we stampede ever closer to online lives – our creations in the cloud – the idea that Product A works well with Product B must surely be a fading one?
Why do I care that your app syncs with Dropbox and Box.net? I do care that it doesn’t sync with Google Drive – a service I’d prefer to use.
Your timesheet app sends its data to Freshbooks? Great, but I use Kashflow and I rather like it.
We see something of a solution with Intents, both on the phone and on the web, but I’m sure there are plenty more iterations to come. Like the proprietary file formats of yesteryear, the idea that your app operates by product, not by protocol, means that it’s both limited by scope and complexity.
Incidentally: I don’t necessarily wag the finger at product designers here.