Gartner: 80 Percent of Businesses Will Never Adopt Windows 8
October 22, 2012 4:08 PM
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Analysts argue Windows 8 does not bring a compelling set of features for business users, drawing Vista comparisons
Windows 8 lands on Friday, and with it the big question of whether the consumer-friendly operating system is as good a fit as previous versions of Windows, which were more stodgy and business-minded from an interface perspective.
I. Businesses May Not Want Windows 8
While there have been some opinionated folks
of Windows 8
for business users, the greater sentiments of the business community towards the upcoming product remain largely unknown. Currently an estimated 41 percent of the world's 1.5 billion PCs run Windows XP. In other words, in the near term, many businesses are still working on their Windows XP to Windows 7 transition plan and have
little thoughts on Windows 8 adoption
Analysts are still busily debating the merits of the upcoming Microsoft Corp. (
) OS product, whose
early adoption rates are trailing those of Windows 7
in a recent briefing, "Some organizations, when they look at Windows 8 Intel tablets, they are going to like them because they are manageable. When they look at RT they are going to be disappointed, because it's no easier to manage than an iPad."
In other words, x86 tablets -- like those bearing Intel Corp. (
) chips -- may bear an advantage for businesses over current tablets, but Windows RT tablets (built with ARM chips) will likely not.
Gartner, Inc. (
) analyst Michael Silver says he expects Windows 8 to never catch on to the extent of Windows XP or Windows 7, even years down the road. He comments, "We believe 90 percent of large organizations will not deploy Windows 8 broadly, and at its peak, we expect about 20 percent of PCs in large organizations will run Windows 8."
Windows 8 boxes on diplay at Wal-Mart [Image Source: The Verge]
Doug Johnson, head of risk management policy at the
American Bankers Association
, similarly argues to
, "Windows 8 is, frankly, more of a consumer platform than it is a business platform, so it's not something that makes any sense from a business perspective at this juncture. There is really no additional business functionality that Windows 8 gives you that I see."
II. Does it Matter?
Increasingly Microsoft's revenue stream is
driven by licensing software
(such as Office and SQL Server 2008), rather than licensing operating systems. Last year OS sales only accounted for 25 percent of Microsoft's bottom line versus 30 percent five years ago.
And a large portion of OS revenue -- roughly 40 percent -- comes from bulk licensing agreements with free upgrade provisions. For that type of licenses, IT departments' decision to adopt or pass on a particular version of Windows makes no difference, as long as the business is using some version of the OS.
In other words, as murky as Windows 8's business fate may be, the impact of those long-term sales on Microsoft's bottom line is even more unclear. That said, the general air of skepticism from business users is a concern for Microsoft in the long term, and definitely something Microsoft will (or, at least, should) take into acount when crafting Windows 8's successor.
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RE: Don't forget about Server 2012.
10/23/2012 1:36:16 AM
Considering I still have numerous clients running Server 2003/SQL 2005, the obvious choice when we replace their servers will be Server 2012. It all depends how much of a compelling improvement it is over Server 2008r2. Some clients have found Small Business Server 2011 (which is 95% SBS 2008) a solid choice, especially when you consider it has a very good Exchange arrangement (opposed to SBS 2003/2008 which neutered Exchange) and in Premium has some virtualization and SQL bundled in.
SBS 2011 is
buggy though. I spend 5-6 hours after deployment just straightening out the bogus errors and warnings in Event Viewer. It also eats up a lot more resources which increases power usage, shutdown/hibernation time during a power failure, and disk wear.
RE: Don't forget about Server 2012.
10/23/2012 2:44:20 AM
Even more business opportunity for you with the move towards more PS in Server 2012. Few "IT Helpers" want to venture down that path and the ones that do more than likely muck things up. The irony is I am very much looking forward to migrating to SQL 2012 from MySQL, especialy for the BI. Just waiting for the mission-critical software vendor to support it.
Hoping MS releases a "Business Pack" that brings back the classic appearance of both the server and client OS though.
RE: Don't forget about Server 2012.
10/23/2012 8:52:12 AM
Do yourself a favor and apply 2008 SP1 to SBS 2011. We've seen many domain controllers plagued by sharepoint resource bugginess that can easily be rectified by the SP.
SBS 11 was ok, and no end users experience any down sides, its just very noticable at the console.
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