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 6:45:48 PM
This may work in large offices like law offices and such but it a nightmare in a laboratory environment like we have. For us to roll out an across the board OS update would probably require several million dollars in equipment purchases to cover maybe 20 computers. That is because those computers are attached to equipment costing anywhere from $50k to $250k each with proprietary software some of which right now only will run on WinNT, or W2K or XPsp2. We just spend $150k upgrading some equipment to get away from WinNT because we feared that losing 400mhz PII machine could cost us a lot of down time. The equipment still worked great and had many years of life left in it, but was ham-stringed by the software not being compatible with anything other the WinNT4. (Yes we even tried it on W2K and XP to no avail). Agilent even has some of the newer software set so that if it detects sp3 on XP it will refuse to install.
For some places the fast onward and upward march of OS and processor development just does not make financial sense to try to keep up with.
RE: Don't forget about Server 2012.
10/24/2012 12:00:34 AM
You could still run the old software on newer hardware couldn't you?
"It looks like the iPhone 4 might be their Vista, and I'm okay with that." -- Microsoft COO Kevin Turner
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