Skip to comments.What if Windows 8 flops?
Posted on 10/04/2012 11:01:13 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
Microsoft launches Windows 8 later this month after a year of gradually making the new operating system more and more available, hoping for a big hit that will drive sales this holiday season and beyond, and giving the company new hope of grabbing a bigger share of tablet sales.
But what if Windows 8 flops?
For businesses, the problem won't be that dire, says Paul DeGroot, principal consultant at Pica Communications. Businesses that are Microsoft shops already have an operating system, likely Windows 7, but if not, Windows XP with a plan to adopt Windows 7 soon before support for XP ends next spring.
If Windows 8 is a complete bust, enterprises can stick with Windows 7 and wait until Microsoft picks itself up and does a better job with Windows 8 service packs or Windows 9 (or whatever it calls the next major release), he says. After all that's what happened with Windows Vista, says Matthew Casey, an analyst with Technology Business Research, and Microsoft can handle a disappointing Windows 8.
In fact that is a likely scenario, DeGroot says. . "Most of the companies I work with are standardizing on Windows 7. They are not going to be migrating to Windows 8." He says many businesses will license Windows 8 but end up reimaging their networks with Windows 7, similar to how many enterprises licensed Vista but installed XP.
Casey says a Microsoft stumble with Windows 8 will be handled by businesses the same way the performance of Windows Vista was handled. "If that's the case we'll see a similar reaction from Microsoft," he says "It's not going to be them closing their doors." The company will press on with Windows 8 and its fundamental architecture.
The impact on consumers won't be that great, either. If Windows 8 doesn't catch on a big part of the reason will be that consumers are buying some other tablet platform they like better, so they'll be happy. But according to Gartner, Microsoft will be missing a big opportunity to make its mark in mobile devices if the Windows 8 gamble doesn't pay off.
"It is a risk that Microsoft must take to stay relevant in a world where mobile devices with new modern experiences are becoming the norm," Gartner says in a research note "Is Windows 8 in Your Future?"
The popularity of smartphones and tablets has Microsoft playing catch up, particularly with Apple, whose iPad dominates in tablets and whose iPhone holds down big large chunk of smartphones. "With Windows 8, Microsoft tries to address the excitement of the tablet market by adding a tablet interface to Windows," Gartner says.
If Windows 8 does become popular with consumers and finds its way into enterprises via the bring-your-own-device phenomenon it will still have hurdles to clear with IT departments.
Ultrabooks and tablets still need to establish themselves in the corporate world where their use raises questions, Casey says. Who will pay for them? How will they be secured? "These are pieces that need to fall into place in the enterprise planning cycle," he says.
It's also questionable whether they will gain traction as platforms for business applications, DeGroot says. "I think that is going to be a very tough sell," DeGroot says, because the apps have to be vetted by the Microsoft Store before they will be allowed on closed Windows 8 devices. Businesses won't want to leap that hurdle nor will they want to side-load apps on devices to get around the restriction that Windows 8 apps must be reviewed by and sold through the store. "I have some difficulty imagining many organizations are going to want to do that."
Beyond that, developers are not prepared to write for Windows 8; their training and experience leans toward traditional enterprise applications for conventional desktops without touch capabilities, DeGroot says. Touchscreen can actually be a barrier.
With Windows 8 Microsoft is overhauling the underpinnings of its operating system with the introduction of Windows Runtime, a new architecture that gives a common footing to applications across a range of devices. Such applications can support both x86 and ARM hardware, potentially opening up the possibility of writing apps once that can run on any device.
Microsoft hopes it can write its next major chapter with Windows 8 and Windows Runtime, Gartner says, and that is what makes a Windows 8 success - and avoiding a flop - so important. Windows 8 is simply the biggest turning point for Microsoft in decades.
"Windows 8 is not your normal low- or even high-impact major release of the OS," the research firm says. "We believe it's the start of a new era for Microsoft, the Windows RT era, which follows the Windows NT era that began in 1993 and is just starting to wane."
-- Tim Greene covers Microsoft for Network World and writes the Mostly Microsoft blog
NOT AN AUSPICIOUS PORTENT FOR WINDOWS 8
TITLE: Paul Allen Calls Windows 8 Puzzling and Confusing
Even numbered Windows don’t fit the frames. Buy at your own risk. Remember Windows 2.0?
Even numbered Windows don’t fit the frames. Buy at your own risk. Remember Windows 2.0?
NEW AND IMPROVED, AWESOME WINDOWS 9!.......
“When” not “if.”
“Windows 9, because it’s one more”
My Windows goes to 11!
At least Microsoft has experience with that kind of situation.
Ubuntu Linux 12.04 LTS. Its free and easy to use. I know less than a novice about computers. Downloaded it and installed on two computers. Its awesome.
Eventually it will get silly. They should hire a bunch of former Apple programmers and get it done..........
I have no intention of dumping an excellent working Windows 7 for "Windows 8 "CLOUD" based system. I also have no desire to have a portion or all of my personal information, intellectual property off site in the hands of some "cloud" ready to be stolen, manipulated, lost or heavens knows what by nefarious computer hackers working overtime to steal it, Microsoft or the government (yes, I do not trust them either).
Windows 8 is like the first year model of a new car design. My dad always warned me: "Son, NEVER buy the first year of a new model car because the bugs are not worked out yet. Wait a few years for early adopters/car buyers to discover the bugs as they arise from real-life usage. Then, AFTER those bugs have been dealt with in the subsequent few years/upgraded models, if you are still interested in that model car buy it."
That counsel has stood the test of time.
Windows XP = Success, Windows VISTA = FAIL, Windows 7 = Success, Windows 8 = NEW, untested model, untested, unproven platform... Success or FAIL? You fill in the blank.
Then, like most sane people, we’ll stick with XP.
It is out of support - and STILL our corporate standard.
I’ve had the enterprise evaluation on one of my old home LT’s for a month and a half now. I use Linux at home and Windows (begrudgingly) in my office. I find Windows 8 to be exceptional - nice all the way around and rock solid. I’m enjoying my time playing around with the ee, and will absolutely be buying the full retail editions when they go on sale at the end of the month.
I’m dual booting windows 8 and Ubuntu with the enterprise eval right now and LOVE IT!
Ubuntu and any other Linux is fine...if you don’t want to do any real work. No Microsoft Office, and I’m sorry but the free Office alternatives for Linux are all crap.
I’ve been using the Windows 8 final version (RTM) since August and it is spectacular. I think consumers are going to love the innovative and fresh approach that Microsoft has created. We’ll know soon.
Ubuntu Linux 12.04 ... ahead 66.45% more than Windows 8!
I’ll be upgrading from XP.
To OS X.
RE: Im dual booting windows 8 and Ubuntu with the enterprise eval right now and LOVE IT!
So, which of the two OS’s do you like better?
What is the difference between 12.04 and12.10 ? I have been thinking of trying it out.
You obviously don’t know what you’re talking about.
are terraflops a good thing?
Now MS gives us Uberflops... isn’t that even better??
I’ve been usine Linux for so long that I am most comfortable with it, at present. To be honest, however, I’d have to say I prefer Win8 to Ubuntu 12 right now. I find myself doing more and more in Win and love the ease of controlling the many devices in my home with PnP ease. The media controls are breathtaking in Win8.
Given that you have been using Windows 8 for at least some time, and you love it over Ubuntu... I am now wondering why there’s so much cynicism against Windows 8...
Maybe it’s because of Microsoft’s past record.
I haven’t been using LINUX for some time, but did they have a record of sloppy releases like Windows ME and Windows Vista?
ON the other hand, what if it’s a spectacular success?
One thing for sure is that, there are always detractors to anything that Microsoft does, and who wish for failure from Redmond.
I have been one of those who has been using Windows 8 since it’s initial test stages, and with the currently available RTM, I can attest that, if functions flawlessly, and faster, and with more features, and is a very worthy replacement for Windows 7 and any other OS, including anything from Apple. There is no need to continue with Windows 7 when the upgrade to Windows 8 is a “mere” $39, and that’s for the Pro version.
Given that you have been using Windows 8 for at least some time, and you love it over Ubuntu... I am now wondering why theres so much cynicism against Windows 8...
Maybe its because of Microsofts past record.
I havent been using LINUX for some time, but did they have a record of sloppy releases like Windows ME and Windows Vista?
That is certainly the reason. I decided to check it out on a whim, but have avoided Windows releases like the plague after the ME disaster. I don't have a choice on my office computers, as we need to interface with DOD sites daily and there is no option other than Windows. At home though, I have been happy with Linux.
The look and interface of GUI is completely different - you have the choice of using the traditional desktop (it resides as a tile on the new homescreen). You can add apps and tiles to the homescreen and roll through them horizontally with your mouse - it's a nice touch, everything is full screen when you open it, and stability is amazing.
The full retail version will only be $69.00 for the last three months of this year - it goes up in January. An upgrade will only be $14.00 for the first three months. For $70.00 it is well worth checking it out.
The boot time, even on an old Celeron processor is impressive (under 10 seconds).
I think it's funny how people forget how bad XP was when it came out. It wasn't until SP3 that it became even marginally stable as an OS. I suspect too many people think that rebooting a computer is normal or something. Hint: It's not.
“Ubuntu and any other Linux is fine...if you dont want to do any real work. No Microsoft Office, and Im sorry but the free Office alternatives for Linux are all crap.”
Can’t do real work? Oh, please! I have been using Linux at the office for years. Open Office and Libre Office are not exact clones of Microsoft Office, but they should have more than enough features to satisfy everyone except a few “power users”. I use the word processing and spreadsheet modules, but have not tried the “powerpoint” module and so can’t honestly comment on that particular module. I don’t need to spend hundreds of dollars for a Micro$oft product whose esoteric features I won’t use.
You’re obviously a computer expert. Please. Enlighten me.
How hard is it to upgrade to Win7 from XP?
I have a 5 year old laptop with XP Home. If MS is going to stop support, I guess I should move up. Don’t want / can’t afford a new laptop at this time.
It's really, really good. In fact, I'm seriously in love with it.
Am considering changing to an Apple computer when my venerable laptop starts to die. I resist because of all the fairly expensive software I have that wouldn't run on an Apple.
But each version of Windows since XP gets worse. And I include 7 in that. I've tried Ubuntu but it's not ready for mass consumer use. Macbook may be in the cards.
Ah, your check finally arrived from Redmond, I see. :)
Look, I think Win8 will work great on handhelds. I predict a roaring success on Surface and the rumored Microsoft Win8 Phone next year.
But it's gonna suck its way deep into the cold, hard ground when installed on business and home non-touch enabled machines.
There's nothing wrong with that, per se -- non-touch machines can run Win7, a terrific OS -- unless Microsoft gets their head up their ass again like with Vista and tries to shoehorn it down everyone's throat.
Most businesses are telling Microsoft, "F**k me once, shame on you. F**k me twice, shame on me." They won't get fooled again.
But like I said, on handhelds, I expect Win8 to do just dandy.
Absolutely false. Unless you have a need to be compatible with some existing corporate mess built upon Office, that is.
If all you need is ordinary workbooks, documents, and slide decks, you will be fine with Libre. Libre can interoperate with the vast majority of the Office files you are likely to encounter.
OK. I use Linux every day. At work. In a Windows desktop environment. The Office products available to me a perfectly compatible with the Windows machines around me--including Exchange, Word and Excel.
I get more work accomplished than any other person on my team. I am less vulnerable to virii and trojans. I know that if I leave my desk, my laptop is safe from intrusion due to my disk encryption. Unlike my teammates, I do not have to connect to our linux servers through a third-party program, like PuTTy, which makes me much more efficient.
I don't have to worry about "patch Tuesday" or other zero-day exploits. I know whether the kernel, or program I'm using is currently vulnerable to some kind of attack, and don't have to wait on some nebulous corp to assure me one way or the other.
No Microsoft Office, and Im sorry but the free Office alternatives for Linux are all crap.
When was the last time you used one of these alternatives? Were you trying to do something that MS has decided you need to do? I have never been in an environment where you needed half the features of Office Bloatware--unless the user was a showoff, trying to impress his co-workers. Excel spreadsheets work just fine, as do document templates in Word. I connect to Exchange 2010 directly with no issues and can send/receive mail.
Just because they look and feel slightly different does not make them "crap."
The moment you connected your computer to the Internet, you exposed yourself to that risk.
And also consider all those government, corporate and medical databases that are also connected. Good security can lock things down, but no one can be 100% sure.
My point is, we're already there. The "cloud" began when people started putting content on the Internet, and others started connecting to it.
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