Who Owns Your Identity?

Follow me on this for a minute. I know it’s all speculation on where this digital transformation is going, but this gives me a way to think about it.

1) Microsoft is Microsoft, so that’s big. But it bought LinkedIn recently and hasn’t said what it will really do with it.

2) Facebook’s CIO shared the stage at the Keynote of Microsoft’s World Wide Partner Conference  this summer and announce “Microsoft is cool again” and that it was moving its entire to the Microsoft stack” of solutions: O365, Azure, etc.

3) Microsoft owns Skype. Facebook owns WhatsApp and Instagram.

4) Apple and Microsoft shared the stage at Apple’s annual meeting making them at least “frenemies”.


5) WhatsApp announced this week it will share phone numbers and data with Facebook.

Now all of these pieces are separate – so far. But what if they federate? Who is the one left out? Who isn’t accounted for? Google.

Is it game over for the identity game?

If you take the largest group of personal identity (Facebook) and add it to the largest group of professional identity (LinkedIn), toss in the fact that you can use a voice app from any device, add in a Skype app for any communication, can Google compete with this?


So the question, it seems to me,will boil down to this: Who owns your identity? Where is your main log in?

Now you can join me in sleepless nights trying to figure out what it all means.

Here’s your medal for reading.



* Kurt Sippel is president of Applied Tech and offers his musings on the changing world of technology in this occasional column.

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