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Company expects another year of record sales, despite imminent successor incoming

Microsoft Corp.'s (MSFT) Windows 7 has by far surpassed the company's expectations, becoming the fastest growing operating system in history.  The well liked product already achieved the distinction of passing Windows XP.

Now, even with Windows 8 looming ahead for a late 2012 launch, Microsoft says it expects to move a record amount of Windows 7 personal computers -- 350 million -- in 2012.  The figure came courtesy of Microsoft's larger than life CEO Steve Ballmer, who told reporters at a conference in Seoul, South Korea, "It makes Windows the most popular single system."

The implied message is "more popular than Apple".  Apple, Inc. (AAPL) has been challenging traditional PC makers in sales, assuming you count the best-selling iPad tablet as a "personal computer".

Gartner, Inc. (IT), a top market research firm estimates that 103 million tablets will be sold in 2012, with two thirds of those being iPads.  That places cumulative iPad sales close to 70 million units.  Apple sells many more tablets than traditional personal computers.

Windows 8 hopes to gobble up some of Apple's tablet sales [Image Source: Lenovo]

Still Windows devices will outsell the popular tablet, based on Mr. Ballmer's numbers by roughly a 5-to-1 ratio.  Microsoft hopes Windows 8 will expand on that margin, with both Intel Corp. (INTC) and various ARM Holdings plc (LON:ARM) licensees planning major tablet pushes.

Of course Microsoft could face a backlash if Windows 8 is perceived as too much of a "tablet-centric" operating system and a poor choice for traditional personal computers.

Source: Bloomberg



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By Bateluer on 5/22/2012 9:40:26 PM , Rating: 1
MS made the same prediction with WP7, that it was going to revolutionize and revitalize their mobile product line as well as outsell their competitors. And oops! They have a 1% smartphone market share. They make more money in frivolous litigation and lawsuits than they do from selling WP7 handsets.

W8 is a complete and total fail on any non-touch device due to Metro. And every tech pundit and analyst has said as such. Just like with XP to Vista, people aren't going to see the need to purchase a whole new OS so soon and especially one that radically reduces the usability of the machine.


By ritualm on 5/23/2012 12:29:41 AM , Rating: 3
Hey look, Apple fanboy says W8 is going to fail because Steve Jobs/Tim Cook says so!

Name a company that says its newest product sucks right out of the gate - there isn't any.

Name a company that has made accurate predictions all the time - there isn't any.

I'm likely going to integrate W8 into my primary computer setup... and lovin' it... while you sit on the sidelines saying untrue things because you have no experience with it.


By GPig on 5/23/2012 1:58:39 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
W8 is a complete and total fail on any non-touch device due to Metro. And every tech pundit and analyst has said as such


And every tech pundit and analyst has based that opinion on a beta release of the software. Try reading the latest on the multi monitor improvements which addresses pretty much every complaint I've so far heard.

http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2012/05/21/enha...


By dark matter on 5/23/2012 7:57:27 AM , Rating: 1
Ah, so because Microsoft said it's fixed. It's fixed is it.


By nafhan on 5/23/2012 10:04:14 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
W8 is a complete and total fail on any non-touch device due to Metro
...yeah, you don't know what you're talking about, at all. For non-touch users, it's generally no better or worse than Windows 7. A little different, and not something I'd pay $100 to upgrade to from Win 7, but absolutely not a "total fail".

My predictions: on the PC side of things, Windows 8 will be less successful than Windows 7 or XP - mostly due to lack of enterprise adoption, consumers will be fine with it. For tablets: no idea; I think things could go either way.


By JediJeb on 5/23/2012 2:54:28 PM , Rating: 2
I can see it for people who use their computer for browsing and office apps, but for me in an industrial setting, it would mean trying to get vendors of expensive pieces of equipment to rewrite their software which usually doesn't happen. Our biggest vendor just now started to release software with their new equipment that is compatible with W7, up till then the best you could do is something with XP SP2, if you had SP3 the software would refuse to install. When you pay $150k for a piece of equipment the vendor can pretty much say you use whatever OS they wish. We have some equipment now that works perfectly, yet if we wish to move away from a WinNT OS we will need to spend another $100k to replace it with a new piece what is compatible with the software running on W7.

Rewriting operating systems just because someone can ever few years is great for OS vendors and may be acceptable in shops and homes that only use basic apps, but for those using specialized programs and hardware interfaces it can be a nightmare. They still make a lot of this equipment that uses COM ports and those are becoming difficult to find on a PC, especially when you need more than one.


By nafhan on 5/24/2012 10:15:13 AM , Rating: 2
To be fair "people who use their computer for browsing and office apps" make up essentially the entire non-server market.
It sounds like you guys should not upgrade to Windows 8 on your industrial control machinery. With embedded stuff in general, I'd say if it is not online and it works fine, upgrading the OS isn't really necessary. So, it's kind of a non-issue. Upgrade when you have to for a good reason, not when a new version comes out.


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