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Wishing for Windows 8 Failure? Keep Rubbing Your Magic Lamp

Wishing for Windows 8 Failure? Keep Rubbing Your Magic Lamp

 

Windows 8 is here to stay…

Today I plucked a link out of my Twitter feed to a blog post by Israel Lifshitz, founder of SysAid Technologies about Windows 8.

The post on his blog was titled “Why I’m wishing success to Windows phone and not to Windows OS for PC?

This is a good post worth reading but there are several points I respectfully disagree on.

What’s to disagree with?

I’m going to focus on some of the major points of the post:

  • “Failure of Windows OS for PC will break the monopoly of Microsoft that has been going on for many years.”
  • Monopoly is bad for competition
  • Microsoft has blocked competition in the PC OS Market and stifled innovation.
  • “The monopoly of Microsoft is starting to crack.”

I’m assuming that this post refers to medium to large scale companies with IT infrastructure ranging from desktop to laptop PCs, server backend, databases et cetera. For most of us there has been no Microsoft monopoly at least for ten years but I can agree that for this part of the market Microsoft technology has retained a greater degree of stickiness.

Very soon every Windows PC in the market…

…will arrive preinstalled with Windows 8. Whilst Windows 8 is a radical, revolutionary departure for some users from prior versions of Windows it still falls into their “It’s Windows oh good.” comfort zone.

New Windows 8 UI Desktop

If Windows 8 fails to take off (and I would say with 60 million licenses sold to date we may as well trash the term “fail” here) it will be due to 3 main reasons: –

  1. Microsoft has yet to come up with a constructive way to drive a stake through the heart of Windows XP and encourage companies to upgrade.
  2. Windows 7 was until Windows 8 the best product anyone has ever made in the PC OS market. Companies are reluctant to abandon that stability.
  3. Money: given the economic climate in Europe and the US there is a reluctance to expend valuable funds even to upgrade existing PCs to Windows 8. Keep in mind that some of these companies will discover hardware, peripherals and software that are not Windows 8 compatible in the system analysis phase and will have to refactor budgets to cover this.

What are your viable, productive alternatives?

  • Linux Desktops.
  • Chromebooks
  • Apple’s MAC OS X

Okay, I used the word “viable” a bit easily there. IMHO Chromebooks are just taking off and have yet to build up any momentum. Linux Desktop is usable and there are certainly more than one version to choose from but that is what makes it a fragile alternative. If Linux is Linux then why the <redacted> isn’t the command line syntax not the same for Ubuntu, CentOS, Red Hat? It’s painful and annoying to switch between them and remember the differences.

Apple MAC OS X deserves its own mention. I like it. Yes don’t faint, I do. OS X has been around for a while and let’s be honest, it just works.

That said Apple has more money than some small countries and they still don’t have competitive work and productivity software to Windows. Take Office, yeah I know if you are on a MAC you would rather not; especially if you need to work in right to left languages.

Is this all just a matter of competition?

No. Apple and Google have failed to seize the PC market from Windows.

When you take into account just how much we work in the cloud surely this speaks to a ridiculous failure on their part given things like Google’s Apps productivity suite.

Microsoft has no more been strangling competition than Apple has become an evil empire bent on replacing Microsoft in that role.

(YouTube video courtesy of Microsoft Xbox)

The failure to innovate and produce superior and competitive products to Microsoft’s Windows Desktop OS or Office is just that: their failure.

Why is that? Because the warfare has been in the theater of mobile and yes, in terms of devices Apple is winning and Android is possibly most widespread but as I mentioned in a previous post Microsoft is poised to release Office 365 for Android and iOS.

This is the game changing move.

Microsoft will continue to battle uphill with Windows Phone but with Office 365 running on all the major mobile platforms they will secure ownership of the business IT market for on-device productivity and the common backend.

I have stated on many times in the past just how strongly I favor a market where competition is constructive and the consumer has choice. Is Microsoft inhibiting this? No. Their competitors have chosen to compete over mobile and ceded this market to Microsoft.

Between starting to write this post and finishing I read a post on RWW that cites Forrester’s latest market analysis titled “200 Million Workers Want Windows 8 Tablets, Not iPadsand yes one of the major influences here seems to be BYOD.

So while Windows 8 seems to be a tough nut for some to swallow my advice is make the extra effort, the revolution is here and it presents us all with boundless opportunities. We just have to recognize them not try to wish them away.

 
Comments

WIndows 8 is a failure not unlike Vista. 60 million licenses mean nothing if those licenses were sold as OEM preinstalled. That doesn’t mean people will keep the OS or even bother to buy the system with the OS thus hurting the PC industry by preventing sales. It is a failure and if Microsoft wants to save both Windows OS and the PC world, they should split the metro BS off of the OS or at least allow a disable function and I guarantee you people would buy the OS and not hesitate on purchasing new PC’s. It’s like the US government, you know they can fix things but for some reason refuse to do it for their own selfish reasons.

Paul,

First thank you for taking the time to visit and read my blog.
Whilst I’ll admit that the metric of pre-installed OEM versions is not necessarily the best to judge success or failure by I can only add to that my experience working with people who privately and through work have Windows 8 (touch and non-touch).

It’s been received with mixed sentiment for sure but wasn’t XP too? I remember the difficulty people had adjusting to XP from the comfort zone of 95/98.

I was at the launch event Discovery 2012 where people from across industry and others got to try out Windows 8. Not all of these were Windows lovers. One person I spoke to who didn’t want to let go of the laptop with touch Windows 8 on was a life-long Mac user who was pretty much begging to get the laptop right there and then. I was amazed. By and large the people at this event were impressed but wary. Why wary? Because Windows 8 has a learning curve and not everyone wants that.

I have high hopes for Windows 8 and all I can say is I hope that it grows on you and answers your needs. Not everyone is going to like it but then I even now people who don’t like Windows 7 (which many tout as Microsoft’s best ever).

Once again, thanks for visiting and offering your comments. If you have a blog please let me have the link as I am always happy to reciprocate.
Have a great weekend and come visit again.
Jonathan

Do not forget Microsoft can now lock that OS to the hardware, via of manufactors bagging the old BIOS, you get one of these machines, good luck, you need to kiss the Microsoft ring to get something like Linux to run on it. Not sure why iMicrosoft should decide what OS you run on hardware you own, not sure why there get to know how many licensed copys of an OS other then their own running. So, when that new laptop gets some age, you want to put Linux on it, good luck, good luck selling it. Oh, isn’t the new Office non transferable, licensed down to the hardware. Monopoly good, competition in free market, badddd. My best George Bush.

We need a new real lawsuit to reel Microsoft in. Without another GWB we might see something useful.

Hi Tsn,

Welcome to Warptest and thanks for your visit. I’m not sure about this so I’m going to check the details with a contact at Microsoft and see what they say about this.

If you have a link from a mainstream blog citing this I would love to see it.
I do agree that monopolies are bad for the consumer my only answer is right now I’ll check and post a reply with what I find out.
In the meanwhile can the Chromebook or Macs run other OS (and I’m sure we aren’t talking VM’s here) or is the whole industry guilty of this? Something worth considering.

Thanks again,
J

Respectfully disagreeing, multiple news outlets, citing data from Net Applications, has found that adoption of Windows 8 is lagging even behind Windows Vista, with market share after five months at 2.67% (behind Vista’s 4.52% and Windows 7’s impressive 9%), with the trend steadily worsening over the past several months. So anyone hoping Windows 8 will fail can basically just sit back and watch, no charm or talisman required.

Frankly, I blame alot of the failure on playing hardball with the removal of the start button. If desktop mode were a true “classic mode” with the full familiarity and functionality of their wildly successful Windows 7 product, while adding improvements (e.g. integrating touch support), most people would have no problem migrating.

Instead, they’ve alienated their core base of PC users (“Why should I upgrade? I’m not using a tablet.”), annoyed game developers already reluctant to release on PC due to piracy concerns (“Should we bother with a PC version? Nah.”), and tied one of their bread and butter assets (desktop Windows) to their long list of failures in the portable device market. (Remember Pocket PC? Palm wiped the floor with them back then.)

And when asking “What are your viable, productive alternatives?” you left out the most important one: my companies’ existing Windows 7 licenses. (Sure support will expire eventually, but we’ve got a long while til then. The same Net Applications data shows Windows XP(!) still commanding 39% market share.)

Hey Brandon,

Thanks for dropping by and taking the time to read my post on Windows 8. I’m happy to get your input and obviously you are totally correct about maintaining Windows 7 licenses for the time being.

At the end of the day Windows 8 is here and whilst we can agree or disagree about the need for a non-touch oriented version until that happens people can choose to embrace the upgrade with a new computer or not.

I have spent several work sessions demonstrating and training in best Windows 8 practices and I think the weakest link in the OS is the lack of onboard multimedia training/ guidance for a new user.

Once again, thanks for your comments and your visit. Feel free to drop by anytime and or post comments if there is a subject you would like me to offer my take on.

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