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Windows 7 features a cleaner interface, a leaner footprint, and better hardware compatibility. However, according to a recent survey 83 percent of IT professionals at major companies are planning to wait more than a year to upgrade. Shrinking budgets and concern over software compatibility are two key issues.  (Source: Microsoft)
Most business will wait until at least 2011 to upgrade to the new Microsoft OS, study says

After an energetic success with Windows XP, poor support from hardware partners and initial bad publicity marred Microsoft's follow-up effort, Windows Vista.  Many businesses, including trusted partners like Intel, turned their back on Windows Vista and adopted a wait-and-see attitude.  While any OS release sees only partial adoption in the business community (companies typically upgrade only once every several years), comments from several large firms cited perceived issues with Vista itself as one reason to delay upgrading.

Now as Microsoft prepares to release Windows 7 -- which is being lauded as a much more cohesive effort than Vista, including with better hardware support -- the company hopes that business partners will warm back up to a Windows upgrade.  That's not the case, though, according to a recent survey by market research firm Dimensional Research, which found that most companies won't upgrade next year.

The firm writes, "Early beta testers are providing many glowing reports about the functionality and performance of Windows 7, especially compared to Windows Vista.  But is corporate IT excited about the new operating system, or do they dread yet another release?"

The firm surveyed 1,100 IT professionals at large firms.  Over 83 percent reported that they planned to skip the OS in the New Year.  As few large companies migrated to Windows Vista, this figure proves surprising, as it means that many companies plan to continue to use Windows XP, which mainstream support for ends this week.  Overall,
42 percent said they planned to deploy within 12 to 24 months, 24 percent said 24 to 36 months, and 17 percent said that they will wait more than 36 months to deploy, if at all.

The delay is not wholly Microsoft's fault, according to the study.  The researchers say that companies, faced with recession-stricken budgets, simply cannot afford the expenditures need to upgrade to a new OS.  Software compatibility is another major concern too, though.  States the report, "
The majority of participants do not plan to upgrade to Windows 7 in the next year. Economic factors are contributing to the delay in Windows 7 adoption for almost half of all participants. Software compatibility is the most frequently cited concern with Windows 7."

While Microsoft has for the most part done much to assuage consumer fears about the latest Windows OS, it apparently still has a ways to go with addressing businesses' concerns.  Of the surveyed, 67 percent reported concerns over software compatibility and 88 percent of those reporting concerns said it was their primary concern with adopting Windows 7.

Trepidation among the business community to adopt Windows 7 could worsen the economic concerns for both Microsoft and PC retailers like HP and Dell.  The adoption hesitance could spill over into the consumer market, ultimately hurting most major PC players, while helping only a few -- like budget Linux OS providers offering cheaper deployments.  The survey did find that 50 percent have considered a switch to a non-Windows OS due to Vista or Windows 7 concerns.

Despite all its hard work and advances in generating what looks to be a rock-solid consumer product, can Microsoft convince the IT community to switch to Windows 7 early?  The answer may lie in how smoothly the transition goes for the 17 percent of those planning to adopt in the first year.  These deployments will be absolutely critical to Microsoft as success could bring gains in reputation, which could bump up its adoption across the entire business community.

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XP and 3rd party programs
By Regs on 4/13/2009 11:20:22 AM , Rating: 1
There really is no need to upgrade to Vista or 7 yet. 3rd party developers continue to slack and sell programs that either:

A. Don't take advantage of hardware
B. Don't take advantage of OS functionality
C. Don't take advantage of newer technology or programming.

Most progress I've seen has been on the server side.

Remember when Excel and MS word was actually a reputable skill set? Now it's common place. Maybe it's time to raise the bar again?

RE: XP and 3rd party programs
By omnicronx on 4/13/2009 12:59:18 PM , Rating: 2
7 is faster, has more functionality and is more aesthetically pleasing than XP, it is very much so worth the upgrade. Third party developers are irrelevant when even previous software designed for XP runs better.

The only people that should not be updating are those that use some kind of legacy software that is not supported by the Vista/7 kernel.

RE: XP and 3rd party programs
By mondo1234 on 4/13/2009 2:12:55 PM , Rating: 5
7 is faster, has more functionality and is more aesthetically pleasing than XP, it is very much so worth the upgrade

For the Business User? If they cant make more money with it, why upgrade? Aesthetics is the last thing on the list for your secretary or the accounting division. If I am the boss, I'm not spending more money for my secretary to look at a nicer OS, I will spend the money on a nicer looking secretary :P

RE: XP and 3rd party programs
By mindless1 on 4/13/2009 2:19:18 PM , Rating: 2
It's the users, not the systems that are the bottleneck so speed is irrelevant, and also quite arguable. Merely showing some benefits in certain uses on new hardware is not the same thing as being significantly faster, per dollar, at what a business actually uses it for.

"More aesthetically pleasing" is another reason not to switch, the users already know the XP GUI and switching will only cause more retraining time.

Every previous software doesn't run better, it runs the same at whatever level of maturation (patches and version current at the time) it exists in. Either software works acceptibly or a business moves on to something else, already, an OS is not a solution to bad software!

The only people that should be updating when it's first released are reckless morons. Everyone else should not at all "update", rather migrate when a majority of systems have been replaced. It'd be silly to throw away properly running XP systems so they can run the os you like, and not effective to go around upgrading every CPU, amount of memory, to meet your suggestion.

Businesses are eventually captive to whatever MS releases, THAT is why they eventually move on to newer versions of Windows today, because eventually newer software, hardware, and support issues will require it.

By simply waiting, businesses gain three things:

1. Larger % of employees already familiar with the new OS because they bought a PC with it preinstalled. New recruits also familiar, training cost and support issues are reduced.

2. Release of a service pack or two, nobody likes show-stopping bugs. Most bugs won't effect everyone, but any new OS will have several so odds of issues rise.

3. Computer tech gets faster year after year. The later a switch to a new OS is made, the better the hardware can accomodate it. Only looking at certain benchmarks is obviously invalid, anyone with a budget class system like most business computers are, can easily see the sluggishness in Win7 or Vista compared to XP, when comparing both as fresh installations, fully configured for performance.

Things like time to boot or prefetching changes do not matter, these systems get turned on in the morning and run the same thing all day long in most cases.

RE: XP and 3rd party programs
By Jargo on 4/14/2009 7:41:27 AM , Rating: 2
Very true.

Just want to add that by now our support (1st +2nd level) is well trained enough to handle most XP proplems on their own.
Really dont want to think about the amount of re-training it will take to get them to the same level of efficiency on a new OS.

The other advantages mentioned is absolutely not worth the fuzz on a corporation level, nice enough for home-pcs but thats it from my pov.
I certainly just want a stable OS for the clients, the rest is handled by our servers fine enough.

"You can bet that Sony built a long-term business plan about being successful in Japan and that business plan is crumbling." -- Peter Moore, 24 hours before his Microsoft resignation

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