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Windows 8 is the next Windows ME? The sales numbers suggest that accusation is malarkey

Windows 8 was an incredibly bold redesign on the part on Microsoft Corp. (MSFT).  The move to a more touch-friendlygraphically rich operating system certainly seemed to mirror the general direction of the device market, but that did not shield Microsoft from loads of criticism. Many wondered whether it went too far with the graphical gloss, whether it was disrespecting developers with its shift to a walled-garden "Windows Store" app distribution model, and whether it was forsaking traditional desktop power users.

I. Windows 8 Upgrade Sales: Very Strong

But the proof is in the sales, and Microsoft announced today that for all the haters, Windows 8 appears to be doing great.

In its first month of sales Windows 8 has moved 40 million licenses, according to Microsoft.  The company announced the news in a blog post and at a conference presentation.  It also points out that buoyed by reduced upgrade fees, the Windows 8 upgrade rate is outpacing that of Windows 7, the previous sales record-holder.

Indeed, our own polling shows that the majority of users are upgrading to Windows 8, although there are certainly many holdouts bitter about the changes.

Windows 8 boxes
While some upgrades have been via disc, the new OS has largely been digitially distributed.
[Image Source: The Verge]

Windows 8 is the first Microsoft OS to transition to a primarily online distribution.  That shift has not seemed to adversely impact sales.  It appears Microsoft timed its transition to disc-less media correctly.

II. The Road Ahead

Microsoft's Brandon LeBlanc also brags that its Windows Store is thriving, writing:

There were more apps in the Windows Store at launch than any other app store at their launch and since then, the number of apps in the Windows Store has doubled. A number of apps in the Windows Store have crossed the $25,000 revenue mark and the developer keeps 80% of the revenue they make off downloads for the life of their app. A lot of great new apps have been added to the Windows Store since launch such as CBS, ABC News, ABC Family, Engadget, Flixster, OWN (Oprah Winfrey Network), Vimeo and my (current) personal favorite - Top Gear.

A strong app market is good news for Microsoft.  While it offers a more favorable revenue split than other players like Apple, Inc. (AAPL) or Google Inc. (GOOG) (with developers keeping 80 percent of the revenue), Microsoft still is closing the loop to include itself in Windows software sales profits.

In the past, Windows Certification processes offered up small cuts to Microsoft, but software publishers largely pocketed these profits.  Now Microsoft has cut out the middle man by playing super-publisher with Windows 8, the same move Google and Apple have made with their mobile and personal computer platforms (although Google does allow unofficial third party channels).

Ballmer Slate
Microsoft needed a bold reinvention in the mobile direction to keep up with market trends.
[Image Source: Bloomberg]

Looking ahead, Microsoft has a lot of unanswered questions -- most notably on the leadership front.  Windows 8 was the baby of departed Windows President Steven Sinofsky.  His shoes are currently being filled by former CFO and CMO Tami Reller on the business/marketing front and by Internet Explorer, Office and Windows interface veteran Julie Larson-Green on the software/hardware development front.

And the deep divisions between those who love Windows 8 and those who hate it, could hint that sales may dip to a slower pace than Windows 7 after the fans have completed their upgrades.

But, given the already modest success, and given the life-or-death need for Microsoft to have a cohesive, touch-friendly mobile platform, it appears overall Microsoft made the right choice.  Windows 8 isn't perfect, certainly and as they say, haters are going to hate.  And that is certainly true of Windows 8.  But it's better to be hated for innovation than panned for lack thereof.

Source: Microsoft

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By Zaranthos on 11/28/2012 12:41:56 PM , Rating: 5
Sales don't equal users. I've already had customers buy new computers and downgrade them from Windows 8 to Windows 7. The super low upgrade prices will also drive sales at a higher rate than Windows 7 and many of those sales will be people willing to buy it even if they don't use it.

RE: Malarkey
By Zuul on 11/28/2012 12:52:27 PM , Rating: 2
Very true. It also is not indicative of adoption either as downgrade rights exist.

However, sales does show something important: $$.

RE: Malarkey
By Cypherdude1 on 11/28/2012 1:36:06 PM , Rating: 3
Very true. It also is not indicative of adoption either as downgrade rights exist.
Downgrade rights? If you buy a laptop with Windows 8, can you downgrade to Windows 7 Home 64 for free?

RE: Malarkey
By dgingerich on 11/28/12, Rating: 0
RE: Malarkey
By elliottn on 11/28/2012 2:01:37 PM , Rating: 2
Windows 8 does come with downgrade rights.

RE: Malarkey
By dagamer34 on 11/28/2012 2:24:52 PM , Rating: 2
Only if the machine you buy came with a Professional/Pro version of Windows.

RE: Malarkey
By Zuul on 11/28/2012 2:18:55 PM , Rating: 2
You have to obtain the media yourself (if you go thru the OEM, they may charge you for the physical disc and shipping), however there is no cost for the license itself.

Certain Windows 8 licenses CAN be downgraded and the instructions are here:

OEM versions of Windows 8 eligible for downgrade
Windows 8 Pro includes downgrade rights to:

•Windows 7 Professional
•Windows Vista Business

RE: Malarkey
By jbwhite99 on 11/28/12, Rating: -1
RE: Malarkey
By tayb on 11/28/2012 4:47:35 PM , Rating: 2
Only the professional versions. Windows 8 Pro -> Windows 7 Pro/Windows Vista Business. Microsoft offered the same downgrade options with Windows 7 as well. XP is no longer a downgrade options... and it won't run Office 2013.

RE: Malarkey
By Nortel on 11/28/2012 1:38:53 PM , Rating: 5
I do believe if a company like Wallmart buys 10,000 licences to sell, Microsoft counts all of those as sales right away. MS should be releasing the number of activations of Windows 8.

RE: Malarkey
By Burticus on 11/28/2012 3:22:21 PM , Rating: 5
This is correct. It is called "stuffing the channel". They count it as sold even if it is sitting on a shelf at a store.

I suspect this, plus all the new laptops getting shipped with OEM versions, plus the $30 giveaway upgrade price.

As someone else mentioned, should be counting activations, not "sales".

RE: Malarkey
By Florinator on 11/28/2012 4:48:25 PM , Rating: 3
So what? Weren't the numbers for Windows 7 calculated the same way?

RE: Malarkey
By StanO360 on 11/28/2012 5:01:12 PM , Rating: 2

RE: Malarkey
By Alexvrb on 11/28/2012 8:35:38 PM , Rating: 2
If it happened more than a month ago, half of the population has forgotten about it. Anyone else remember the fustercluck that was XP's launch?

RE: Malarkey
By someguy123 on 11/28/2012 10:09:27 PM , Rating: 1
Exactly. People screaming death and doom, microsoft to finally implode with windows 8, and yet when the numbers come in they move the goalposts from units sold to activations, as though most companies don't list units shipped.

I wish doomsday would just come already so people would stop screaming doomsday over everything.

RE: Malarkey
By wordsworm on 11/28/12, Rating: 0
RE: Malarkey
By JKflipflop98 on 12/3/2012 9:11:55 AM , Rating: 2
I suspect if more people would actually use it for a while, we'd see more posts like this. There's nothing to be scared of.

That screen with all the tiles? That's the start menu. It's still there, it just goes full-screen now. If you click down in the corner where the Start button used to be, it opens the start menu, just like before.

People love to freak out over nothing.

RE: Malarkey
By Articuno on 11/28/2012 1:07:28 PM , Rating: 1
It's not hard to get sales when you give your OS away for less than the cost of a CD burner.

RE: Malarkey
By chmilz on 11/28/2012 2:21:58 PM , Rating: 4
Yeah. So cheap. Almost as cheap as OSX for $20. Or as cheap as Android or Linux for free.

MS sold 40M copies of MS. That's money in the bank. The competition has to give it away to get users like that, and then try to make the money back in apps. Apps are gravy for MS.

RE: Malarkey
By Argon18 on 11/28/12, Rating: 0
RE: Malarkey
By Florinator on 11/28/2012 4:49:55 PM , Rating: 2
Oh yeah? Linux has been free for 20 years and they still haven't put Microsoft out of business. Hmmm... makes one wonder...

RE: Malarkey
By Argon18 on 11/28/12, Rating: -1
RE: Malarkey
By dark matter on 11/28/2012 7:12:44 PM , Rating: 3
And yet Android is doing so well...

Enough to make MS sit up and notice....

Go figure.

RE: Malarkey
By wordsworm on 11/28/2012 11:11:07 PM , Rating: 3
You might have to point out that Android is the world's most popular Linux OS.

RE: Malarkey
By schmandel on 11/29/2012 10:51:53 AM , Rating: 3
Worldwide, Android outsold it's nearest competitor, IOS, at around a 2 to 1 ratio in third quarter 2012. Linux is doing just fine.

Metrics that reflect adaptation *choices* would be interesting. I suspect if you cut out the automatic corporate mass license upgrades the Windows 8 picture would not seem so rosy.

I personally can account for hundreds of corporate Windows licenses on machines that were immediately wiped and replaced with Linux, unfortunately that was the only way we could get the hardware at the time, we had to pay the "Windows Tax".

Microsoft's numbers seem mostly about maintaining appearances until they can dump Ballmer, repudiate their "STFU, we already know what's good for you" marketing approach, and maybe actually turn into a company worth dealing with. They will be far more desolated before that happens.

RE: Malarkey
By Cheesew1z69 on 11/28/2012 5:01:13 PM , Rating: 2
When they couldn't compete with Netscape on sales, Microsoft gave their product away free and put Netscape out of business. Friendly competition? Or anti-competitive monopoly? You decide.
Or, it was their OS to put what they want in? Yes, I believe that was it.

RE: Malarkey
By TakinYourPoints on 11/28/2012 6:22:27 PM , Rating: 1
Microsoft makes their money from software, none of the other companies you mentioned do. Google makes their money from advertising, Apple makes their money from hardware.

That said, Microsoft selling their OS for so little may have a surprisingly small impact on their bottom line. The number of people building their own machines and doing self-upgrades has been declining over the last ten years with the rise of the laptop. Giving it away for a fraction of what they used to to a very small part of their customers may be a calculated risk worth taking, and they still make what they're "supposed" to from OEMs.

It boosts the number of installations from the small DIY audience who otherwise would have stuck with Windows 7 and wouldn't have gotten it anyway. Cash is going to come in from OEMs no matter what since MS has a lock on that market.

RE: Malarkey
By 91TTZ on 11/28/2012 4:53:41 PM , Rating: 2
Neither Apple nor Google nor Linux make their money off software. Microsoft does.

Apple makes its money off hardware, not software. You pay $20 for the OS, but you probably paid $1200 for the laptop. Google makes it money off search. Linux is made by people in their free time. It's all open source.

I get my iOS updates for free, but then again I paid a lot more for my iPhone than I would for an Android phone.

RE: Malarkey
By StanO360 on 11/28/2012 5:05:05 PM , Rating: 2
But that's the point isn't it? Microsoft realizes that it needs a broader base of income. Computers last too long now and have long surpassed basic computing requirements. So growth will be slow. And some people replace their laptops with tablets (I never would but our computers are all used for Office apps).

So they must realize that people are happy with 7, so they need to price it accordingly.

RE: Malarkey
By foolsgambit11 on 11/28/2012 6:28:07 PM , Rating: 2
Microsoft still will make their money on software sales. But their new model will rely more heavily on long-term sales of first- and third-party software through the MS Store. It's sort of like turning the Windows business strategy into the Xbox business strategy - make most of your money off software to run on the platform.

RE: Malarkey
By TakinYourPoints on 11/28/12, Rating: 0
RE: Malarkey
By TakinYourPoints on 11/28/12, Rating: 0
RE: Malarkey
By tayb on 11/28/2012 9:02:18 PM , Rating: 2
Apple makes plenty of money selling software. They sell OS X upgrades and iOS upgrades, they sell apps on the app store, they manage the distribution of apps on the app store, and they sell OS X software (iLife suite and the like). They also bundle software with every device sold and it would be unfair to count a Macbook Pro or iPhone as 100% hardware revenue. The real magic lies in the software else no one would bother with it.

RE: Malarkey
By TakinYourPoints on 11/28/2012 10:23:29 PM , Rating: 1
Selling software serves as a way for Apple to keep customers in the Apple ecosystem, thus selling more hardware which is where their profit lies.

Selling software indirectly results in profit, but as a direct center for profit it is a very small fraction of what Apple makes selling hardware.

Microsoft is in the opposite position where they sell very high margin software that is almost pure profit for them. Apple doesn't sell first-party high margin software in anything close to large numbers, and almost all of the profit from third party software in the App Store goes to publishers and developers, not Apple.

RE: Malarkey
By ericmarak on 11/28/2012 1:08:32 PM , Rating: 4
Precisely. I bought two copies just because it was available for the super low price of $13 when it was first launched. Otherwise at the normal price I might not have bought it. Not that I'm using both the copies. I only have it installed on my laptop just to see what it's like. Almost never go to the Modern UI and use the desktop exclusively. But I do like the fast boot-up and reduced resource usage.

RE: Malarkey
By tayb on 11/28/2012 1:55:02 PM , Rating: 4
All aboard the excuse train. Choo choo.

Sorry that Windows 8 isn't the epic failure that all the "techies" on here predicted it would be...

RE: Malarkey
By messele on 11/28/2012 2:48:35 PM , Rating: 2
What, you mean the self-proclaimed harbingers of tech-nirvana that ram their "my way or no way" attitudes down everybody's throats may not be as in touch as they think they are?

Nah, not possible.

RE: Malarkey
By Cheesew1z69 on 11/28/2012 3:35:51 PM , Rating: 2
Like you?

RE: Malarkey
By B3an on 11/28/2012 3:22:42 PM , Rating: 4

And heres some counter points for that guys stupid excuses:

Yes Win 8 is cheaper, but Win 7 was a free upgrade to anyone who bought a PC within 3 months before Win 7 release. Theres no free upgrade offer for Win 8.

There was also literally millions of people waiting for Win 7 because they was still on XP and didn't want to go near Vista. It was inevitable that 7 was going to sell very well.

Yet Win 8 has sold more in the same amount of time. Could it just be that people actually like it and want it. I consider 8 a big improvement over 7 on my desktop PC which i heavily use for work.

RE: Malarkey
By 91TTZ on 11/28/2012 4:47:01 PM , Rating: 2
Actually, Windows 8 profits are way down compared to Windows 7.

A certain percentage of Windows 8 licenses are sold to OEMs like Dell to put on their desktops and laptops (which aren't selling well in case you haven't been keeping track of the news)

And the average selling price of Windows 8 is only a fraction of the cost of Windows 7. Windows 8 may even be a loss leader for Microsoft, we'll never know.

RE: Malarkey
By Florinator on 11/28/2012 4:51:55 PM , Rating: 2
Actually, Windows 8 profits are way down compared to Windows 7.

This statement is based on what data?

RE: Malarkey
By 91TTZ on 11/28/2012 5:05:31 PM , Rating: 2
Because they sold marginally more units than Windows 7 except at less than half the price. Also keep in mind that they released this right during the holiday season so it's expected that they're going to sell more. Everyone sells more stuff this time of year.

RE: Malarkey
By TakinYourPoints on 11/28/2012 6:24:55 PM , Rating: 1
The number of Windows 8 copies sold to DIYers is very small given that that particular segment of users has been getting smaller every year.

They didn't cut the cost for OEMs, at least as far as I know, and that's what really matters since that makes up the bulk of their income.

RE: Malarkey
By 91TTZ on 11/29/2012 10:48:24 AM , Rating: 1
But it's pointless to count OEM sales since that doesn't reflect how much consumers like the OS. Nearly all PCs are sold with a Microsoft OS on them, and that OS is going to be whatever they currently are selling. The number of licenses they move will then be proportional to the number of PCs sold in the industry. I think that Microsoft has something like a 90% market share, so you can just multiply the number of PCs sold by .9 and come up with how many licenses Microsoft has sold.

People universally hated Windows ME, yet Microsoft's sales of that were good while it was out. That's because any consumer PC that was sold at that time pretty much got Windows ME preloaded from the factory.

RE: Malarkey
By EricMartello on 11/28/12, Rating: -1
RE: Malarkey
By ImEmmittSmith on 11/28/2012 2:52:23 PM , Rating: 2
Exactly, our company is upgrading several hundred computers, but MS will not sell us Windows 7, we HAVE to buy windows 8 and downgrade to windows 7. I would think the Activations of Windows 8 would tell the true story. It is truly a numbers game and they don't always tell the whole story.

RE: Malarkey
By StraightCashHomey on 11/28/2012 3:24:53 PM , Rating: 2
If your "company" has several hundred devices and you're not enrolled in volume licensing, your department is incompetent. You can get Windows _ Enterprise in whatever flavor you want.

RE: Malarkey
By tayb on 11/28/2012 4:41:21 PM , Rating: 2
Rubbish. Microsoft is not denying access to Windows 7 much less for companies with volume licensing deals.

RE: Malarkey
By WinstonSmith on 11/29/2012 10:08:45 AM , Rating: 1
"Sales don't equal users."

Exactly. And I'll bet most of those sales are to OEMs for (unfortunate) use in their machines.

The local stores (Best Buy, Walmart, etc.) all pulled all of the Win7 laptops off the shelves the instant Win8 was released. Because of that, I was expecting huge numbers of Win7 laptops on Black Friday sales, but that didn't happen. Along with the unusually low $40 price of an "upgrade" (which is actually a downgrade), this looks like an unusual effort by Microsoft to force the adoption of Win8. I don't recall the same sort of thing happening during the transition from Vista to Win7.

Win8 offers nothing of added value to desktop users. Nothing. And every review I see or read is filled with the term "workarounds" when its use on the desktop is discussed. I don't see enterprise buyers transitioning to it until they're absolutely forced to.

This is nothing more than a strong arm attempt to force a smart phone/tablet OS onto the desktop to force a common UI while sacrificing former desktop UI features which can't be run or wouldn't be noticeable on a 4" smart phone. Fail.

Great analysis of this desktop t*rd:

Windows 8 — Disappointing Usability for Both Novice and Power Users

RE: Malarkey
By safcman84 on 11/29/2012 11:54:16 AM , Rating: 2
HOw do you account for the amount of upgrades bought?

Sure, the 40 million includes new PCs but if more people have purchased the upgrade to Win8 from Win7 than they did from WinXP/Vista to Win7 then that is indicative of a strong uptake.

RE: Malarkey
By cyberguyz on 11/29/2012 1:36:23 PM , Rating: 2

I got my copy at $40. To me $40 is not so bad a price to pay to evaluate software. If I don't like it I can dump the dvd and not really be butthurt over it.

I did try out Win8 for a month. You know what? I formatted my HD and put Windows 7 back on. Windows 8 has absolutely nothing to offer me over my Win7 ultimate (hell, it doesn't even have Media Center unless you wanna pay extra for it). Worse, the fact that they dumped the Aero theme in favor of that butt ugly window imagery simply turned me off of it altogether.

I have 5 other computers in the house. Sadly MS will not be getting any upgrade money from me for them.

Too bad Windows 8 for me is an epic fail.

RE: Malarkey
By max_payne on 11/29/2012 2:07:28 PM , Rating: 2
I agree with you on this one about the stunning un-explicable removal of Aero. Windows 7 is a gorgeous OS to look at and use. The W8 desktop look like early versions of Windows and even Linux, back to a 2D world ! I don't understand why people don't comment about this idiotic decision. Like the start button, third parties companies are at work reinstating it, for a fee I suppose. While you can also disable it on W7, it is a big part of why W8 "feel" faster.

Windows 7 is my workhorse for a long time.

RE: Malarkey
By SlyNine on 12/2/2012 2:13:36 AM , Rating: 2
Thats the thing that bugs me most. Why did they gimp windows explorer. They could have Aero and windows alone and given user the option to use both (as in boot to the one they perfer).

Metro provides NOTHING to improve over windows. So why force it.

Few Problems with Windows 8
By abzillah on 11/28/2012 1:15:52 PM , Rating: 1
I have been running windows 8 on my desktop and laptop for two weeks now, and the tiles are cool and I don't miss the start button.

Playing a video or reading a PDF, the program goes into full screen without the option to re-size the window. It's very annoying not being able to control the window size a program takes when 2 or more screens are used.
I'm also having issues with logitech G700 mouse drivers, and software.

RE: Few Problems with Windows 8
By kingmotley on 11/28/12, Rating: 0
RE: Few Problems with Windows 8
By xti on 11/28/12, Rating: 0
RE: Few Problems with Windows 8
By 91TTZ on 11/28/2012 9:36:09 PM , Rating: 2
I don't think techies are anti-change. Some techies are just good at discerning what's an improvement and what's just "a change"

I've tried Windows 8 on a tablet and it looks really nice. It's a great fit.

I'm using Windows 8 on a laptop and it's not a good fit. The start screen and the apps seem to be totally optimized for a tablet with a touch screen instead of a laptop or desktop with a mouse. I hate having to navigate the apps in that manner, it's just not as efficient.

Windows 8's fonts and performance are very nice. It's just that the tablet optimizations make it a sub-optimal UI for desktops and laptops. I will say that Windows 8 with Start8 loaded on it makes it much more usable in my opinion.

RE: Few Problems with Windows 8
By cyberguyz on 11/29/2012 1:43:55 PM , Rating: 2
Not so much being reluctant to change. If I am in the desktop and push to that oversized metro "start button" it takes over the whole freaking screen! I have a 27" screen. Why the hell do I want a single program monopolizing all that real estate? The reason I have a 27" high rez screen is so that while I do one thing I can visually monitor what is going on in 4-5-6 or more other programs right there without having to flip through them.

I come from the CP/M, DOS and DesqView era. I have seen Windows from the Version 1. Windows 8 has gone from a highly productive multitasking OS to an obsolete page-flipping primate from the 1980s.
no Windows 8 is a step backward for sure.

RE: Few Problems with Windows 8
By Mint on 11/28/12, Rating: 0
RE: Few Problems with Windows 8
By 91TTZ on 11/28/2012 9:52:08 PM , Rating: 2
I mean really, how on earth does Win8 reduce productivity when you're clicking less and see more information?

If you're using the Windows 8 optimized apps, it does reduce productivity on a desktop. That's because tablet apps have a clean, simple way of displaying information that works well on a tablet with a small touch screen. However, on a desktop the UI seems to be sparse. The information density is too low when you have a screen of this size and a precise pointing device like a mouse.

I don't hate Windows 8, I just think that there should have been 2 installation options that you choose from when you sign on for the first time - 1 for tablets and 1 for desktops. This would enable those who have tablets to use the customizations for their touch screen while still allowing desktop users to keep the customizations for use with a mouse. It was Microsoft's decision to FORCE us to use the new UI that angered people.

Removing customer choice is never a good thing in my opinion. Microsoft did this as part of a larger plan to gain traction in the mobile market. They want us to get used to this UI so that when we go to buy a phone or tablet we'll choose one with this familiar UI.

RE: Few Problems with Windows 8
By WinstonSmith on 11/29/2012 10:13:37 AM , Rating: 3
"I just think that there should have been 2 installation options that you choose from when you sign on for the first time - 1 for tablets and 1 for desktops"

Exactly. You'll notice that all of the Win8 ads show nothing but touchscreen devices, including laptops.

RE: Few Problems with Windows 8
By Doh! on 11/28/2012 1:35:58 PM , Rating: 3
Open them in desktop mode with desktop apps then you won't have the "forced" full screen problem (change the default apps).

RE: Few Problems with Windows 8
By cknobman on 11/28/2012 1:52:47 PM , Rating: 3
Windows 8 may not be perfect but it is not nearly as bad as some make out to be.

My mother is 59 and a novice computer user at best and when I visited her for Thanksgiving I took her to the store and bought her very first laptop which had Windows 8 installed on it. She is in love with her new computer. Even though the last computer she had was a Windows XP machine it took her less than a full day to get used to and even prefer the new Windows 8 interface.

Now my Dad, who is a BF3 gamer and Windows 7 user, has been playing with my moms Windows 8 laptop and is begging me to upgrade his laptop to Windows 8 too.

Sure Windows 8 interface is not perfect and has some quirks but I can even say that after a few hours I adjusted to it and started to like it myself. For all of these "reviewers", "analysts", and critics saying the interface is confusing and too hard for average people to use I say your either stupid or full of shit. If my 59 & 60 year old mom and dad can learn to use, and like/prefer, Windows 8 in a day then so can most other people.

RE: Few Problems with Windows 8
By Mint on 11/28/2012 1:57:10 PM , Rating: 2
How sad is it that you got rated down for this innocuous post?

RE: Few Problems with Windows 8
By geddarkstorm on 11/28/2012 2:03:53 PM , Rating: 2
Welcome to Dailytech.

RE: Few Problems with Windows 8
By Burticus on 11/28/2012 3:20:32 PM , Rating: 3
Well yeah. Take some computer novices and take away their desktop, only let them choose from their 10-20 installed apps with big icons they can't miss? Sure. MS should have called it "Windows for the Elderly". It's tablet computing on my desktop computer and I hate it.

Not having an option to do away with Metro during the install process? Suckage for mass rollout.

When I need a 3rd party app (like Start 8) to get functionality that was a given in older versions is just dumb.

I can tell I will be on Win 7 for more years to come.

But why cry about it? Don't want it, don't buy it. Not even for the $30 giveaway prices MS is throwing around.

RE: Few Problems with Windows 8
By Kefner on 11/28/2012 4:07:11 PM , Rating: 2
I hear you. At least with Start8 and 8Gadget, it is now usable! I think I've been in Modern UI a handful of times (and that was just to play a couple games). With boot to desktop option in Start8, I don't even have to deal with it. Stardock must be doing well!!! I haven't bought Start8 yet, still on my 30 day trial (reinstalled Win8 a couple weeks ago due to a hardware issue, and restarted the trial), but it's very well done, and worth the 5 bucks, so I'll be purchasing at trials end.

RE: Few Problems with Windows 8
By HackSacken on 11/28/2012 5:00:12 PM , Rating: 2
What functionality was removed in Win8 that you found in previous version of Windows?

RE: Few Problems with Windows 8
By Argon18 on 11/30/2012 5:25:16 PM , Rating: 2
How about being useful? Not looking like a speak-n-spell?

RE: Few Problems with Windows 8
By StanO360 on 11/28/2012 5:08:49 PM , Rating: 2
But that's what MS has to do, most people won't take 5-10 minutes to learn how to drag something onto the desktop! Or search with the Windows key, etc.

My sister is little more than a novice with a computer at her office (underwriting) she is the go to expert! Apple convinced people that it was easy (though rarely much different in reality), and perception is reality for some folks.

RE: Few Problems with Windows 8
By Argon18 on 11/28/12, Rating: -1
By PAPutzback on 11/28/2012 6:12:51 PM , Rating: 2
Then will talk.

Or how many activations for windows 7 there have been over the last month for people rolling back.

There are a whole lot of tricks with numbers going on here. It is the shopping season and it is not like people would be buying windows 7 PCs.

Dailytech needs to run a poll around March to see how many people have either rolled back to 7, stuck with 8 and dealt with the quirks or how many have jumped to Apple.

I mean I activated Windows 8 about 4 different times and now it is on one old PC upstairs as a backup for those times my Win 7 PC is in use. So I've bumped up the numbers with no intention of using the O.S until I am desperate and have bought "Start 8" to make it somewhat manageable.

When i read someone saying all you have to do is "mouse left, mouse right, mouse left", I'm like how the hell is that intuitive. I just want to hit start, type qu and hit enter to fire up Quicken, not scroll through a bunch of blocks or hit search and get zero results because the last search was not on apps.

By Fritzr on 11/29/2012 2:11:05 AM , Rating: 2
Win8 keyboard, mouse, charms, hotspots etc.
Includes downloadable shortcut guide (PDF or XPS)

MSDN Blogs: Partial list of Win8 shortcuts

Microsoft: Win7 keyboard shortcuts (General consensus is that these work under Win8)

The Verge: Windows 8 primer: how to navigate Microsoft's new operating system

Hopefully these will give you enough to actually pull that Win8 machine out and join the power users who have discovered that Win8 is simply Win7 with Metro added. (Actually reports indicate that in Win7 mode it is better than Win7)

Classic Shell is a free classic Start Menu replacement.

How to use Classic Shell

For additional Classic Shell videos and tutorials just Google "Classic Shell Windows 8"

Run Quicken using the Win7 shortcut...Win8 will cooperate nicely
<Win>+r, qu, <Enter>

By WinstonSmith on 11/29/2012 10:28:55 AM , Rating: 2
"Win8 is simply Win7 with Metro added"

In "desktop mode" it becomes obvious that there are very useful Win7 features missing due to their self-serving attempt to force the touchscreen smart phone/laptop UI paradigm onto the desktop.

Don't talk to me about workarounds via "keyboard shortcuts" without admitting they're workarounds around non-touchscreen usability obstacles . A WIMP interface on a desktop machine should, with the exception of needing to type text, allow everything else to be done quickly and easily with the mouse without a touchscreen and the "windowing" part of "windowing OS" means, among other things, that multiple windows should be able to be opened and simultaneously viewed on the desktop.

By Fritzr on 11/30/2012 1:01:37 AM , Rating: 2
You mean the non-touchscreen obstacles that make Win7 so much better?

The keyboard shortcuts you denigrate are the same keyboard shortcuts that power users complain about when they are missing :P See above in this thread where the complaint is "I can no longer use <click start>, <click dialog box>, qu<Enter> to run Quicken". Personally I find that the Win7 technique of <Win>+r, qu<Enter> to be easier and faster. As a bonus it also works identically in Vista & Win8.

Of course this forces that unhappy user to keep his hands on the keyboard while using the text search. Much harder to use this text search since he does not remove his hand from the keyboard...

The Win8 method is actually a Win7 keyboard shortcut, but of course learning those obstructs proper use of the mouse :P

The power users who take the time to learn tend to be happy power users liking Win8 ... there are very few reporting abandonment of Win8 after taking the time to learn to use it properly.

Yes features were removed...Win95 got that complaint, WinXP got that complaint, Vista (pre-loaded with no driver problems) got that complaint...The common theme is "They changed/removed my favorite feature".

The right hand panel of the old start menu still exists on the Win8 desktop. Move the mousepointer to the lower left corner where the Win7 Start button is by default and right click. This was the only part of the old Start menu I ever used and it is retained by Win8, so this (non-power) user is happy--YMMV

By WinstonSmith on 11/29/2012 10:37:46 AM , Rating: 2
And this guy's:

detailed analysis of the Win8 UI nails it:

Windows 8 — Disappointing Usability for Both Novice and Power Users

And the fundamental reasons behind why Win8 is not an "upgrade" for desktop users:

Repurposing vs. Optimized Design

By Fritzr on 11/30/2012 12:09:18 AM , Rating: 3
Perhaps you can link the new article where he actually tries the OS he is slamming.

His statement that there is no desktop tells me that he is reviewing the WinRT version. Yes I completely agree with him that the WinRT version shares the faults that have caused Android and iOS to be complete failures.

His comments about programs & single-tasking apply equally to Android and iOS which also helps explain why they are such awful failures.

Simple explanation
By Solandri on 11/28/2012 2:13:49 PM , Rating: 2
Windows 7 release date - July 22, 2009
Windows 8 release date - October 26, 2012

So Windows 7's initial sales were in 3Q2009. A traditionally slow quarter for sales.

Windows 8's initial sales were in 4Q2012. The hottest quarter for sales. So hot that some retailers pull in half their annual revenue in the single month between Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Try comparing again after a half year of sales. 3Q + 4Q for Windows 7, 4Q + 1Q for Windows 8.

RE: Simple explanation
By Timothy003 on 11/28/2012 3:35:12 PM , Rating: 3
That's not true. Windows 7's release date was October 22.

RE: Simple explanation
By Cheesew1z69 on 11/28/2012 3:39:32 PM , Rating: 1
Microsoft Corporation
Initial release July 22, 2009; 3 years ago [info]
Stable release 6.1[1] (Build 7601: Service Pack 1)[2] (February 22, 2011; 20 months ago) [info]
Source model Closed source / Shared source
License Proprietary commercial software
Kernel type Hybrid
Update method Windows Update
Platform support IA-32 and x86-64
Preceded by Windows Vista[3]
Succeeded by Windows 8

RE: Simple explanation
By Helbore on 11/28/2012 5:03:45 PM , Rating: 3
You are confusing RTM and GA. Both Windows 7 and 8 entered RTM in July and both went to general availability in October.

RE: Simple explanation
By Solandri on 11/28/2012 7:55:40 PM , Rating: 2
Hmm, you are correct sir. Thanks for the info.

By messele on 11/28/2012 1:41:02 PM , Rating: 1
I'm not going to knock Win8 as I've not used it but something that strikes me as odd is that the announcement came so quickly, in a recession that is deeper than it was 3 years ago when Win7 came out and Win7 was so well received it would surprise me if that many people really have upgraded or bought new machines.

After all, the hardware manufacturers are generally reporting declines of traditional computers. Something doesn't add up here. Anybody got any theories?

RE: .
By yale_s on 11/28/2012 2:07:12 PM , Rating: 3
messele wrote:
in a recession that is deeper than it was 3 years ago when Win7 came out and Win7

I don't understand what you mean. October 2009 when win 7 was released was at the bottom of the Bush Recession - after 5 quarters of negative GDP growth and at 10% unemployment. Win 8 was released during an expansion after 13 quarters of GDP growth and at 7.9% unemployment.

RE: .
By messele on 11/28/2012 2:46:06 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah. Welcome to America.

Two things.

Firstly, believe it or not. Win7 and 8 were for sale outside of the US.

Secondly, growth alone does not give an accurate snapshot of the economy. Are you saying that finances are in as good order today as they were mid 2009? There was a big global descent in between and only a small sign of recovery, much of which was smoke and mirrors to suit political agendas (again, globally).

RE: .
By 91TTZ on 11/28/2012 9:55:08 PM , Rating: 2
Keep the idiotic politics out of this. This wasn't a "Bush recession". It was a recession in the US that was part of a larger, global recession. Every country was full of idiots who thought that the recession was the fault of their current leader.

You had idiots blaming Bush for it, now you have idiots blaming Obama for it. The fact is that the recession was happening in the outside world, too.

RE: .
By Argon18 on 11/30/2012 5:27:36 PM , Rating: 1
Who is feeding you your "facts" about the economy? Your numbers are wrong. Besides, if you want a prime example of economic policy failure, miserable miserable failure, look no further than the boy-king Obama.

Upgrade cost?
By edge929 on 11/28/2012 2:52:04 PM , Rating: 3
The biggest factor here is cost. I paid $100 for an upgrade version of Windows 7 Pro back in 2009 but I only paid $15 for an upgrade version of Windows 8 Pro. Both were promotional prices. That's not a fair comparison. Normalize on the upgrade cost and get back to me.

RE: Upgrade cost?
By menting on 11/28/2012 3:35:18 PM , Rating: 2
why is it not a fair comparison? EVERYTHING is factored in as far as the consumer is concerned when deciding to purchase or not.

RE: Upgrade cost?
By menting on 11/28/2012 3:37:13 PM , Rating: 2
forgot to add..if you think price needs to be normalized, then how about population? inflation? economy? ease of getting a computer? heck, if you consider everything, pretty much any record (like olympic records, movie ticket records, etc) can't be considered records then easily.

RE: Upgrade cost?
By Solandri on 11/28/2012 8:03:17 PM , Rating: 2
The upgrade to Windows 7 was free for buyers of systems with Vista shortly before Win7's release. I was a bit surprised they were charging $15 for Win 8 this time around.

Does anyone else notice the careful wording?
By 91TTZ on 11/28/2012 4:42:58 PM , Rating: 4
If you notice, they say that it's "moved more licenses" than previous versions of Windows. This is a big difference compared to having better sales, aka making more money. The truth is that Windows 8 is selling for much, much less money than Windows 7.

Take a look at the Windows 7 Professional upgrade price:

Now look at the Windows 8 Professional upgrade price:

Windows 8 is moving more licenses because it's selling for less than half the price of Windows 7. If it were a stronger product it would command a higher price. If Toyota came out with a notoriously unliked model of the Corolla and then was forced to slash the price to $7,000 you'd see similar headlines- "This is the best selling Corolla ever". But it would be misleading since their profit margins would be horrible or even negative, and after the launch they'd probably fire the guy in charge of the division (cough, Sinofsky, cough)

And in another article I was reading, it sounds like the Microsoft App Store has had a very lukewarm reception. Microsoft didn't even want to hint at any sales figures. People just aren't buying many apps from Microsoft's app store since they have other options to get their applications (direct from the developers).

When you consider Microsoft's R&D expenses it took to develop Windows 8 and then subtract that from the average selling price for a copy of Windows 8, you're going to find that Microsoft is not making nearly the profit off Windows 8 as they did off Windows 7.

By Varun on 11/28/2012 7:49:38 PM , Rating: 2
Wow with all of that data, someone might confuse you for someone that knows what they are talking about. Well done!

However, the vast majority of Windows 8 licenses go to OEMs. They all have agreements on the cost per COA based on volume of sales.

Also, when Windows 7 launched (on October 22nd not July) there was ALSO a promo deal! 3 licences for $150! But of course now they are offering a promo upgrade price of $40, which is FAR less than $50.

So yeah, their profits aren't going to change much due to this promo which only affects a percentage of all sales. I mean, they offered the Windows 7 Promo and they didn't go bankrupt then so they should be OK now.

And your comment about them undercutting the price of 7. Yup, it's called a SALE. Companies have them all the time maybe you even heard of Black Friday where a few companies all have sales.

Touch screen for some
By bupkus on 11/28/2012 1:47:31 PM , Rating: 2
If I were buying a new system that included a touch screen I think I would like W8. But I have it installed on an aging dual core laptop since its release to Tech Net and obviously I can't use this OS at all except in desktop mode.

I wonder what percentage of new Windows PCs lack touch screens or even lack touch pads that allow for edge motion response.

RE: Touch screen for some
By randygrenier on 11/28/2012 1:50:43 PM , Rating: 2
You don't need a touch screen. YOu can do everything with a mouse.

Wait a minute ....
By max_payne on 11/28/2012 3:39:27 PM , Rating: 2
This has to be taken cautiously. First the new come from .. Microsoft, not independently verified. Where does those licences "moved" come from ? Does this take into account, all the individual licenses sold to every PC manufacturers ? Because new machines buyers have no choice except w8. Those 40 millions licences are not "upgrade" ones that I can see. What we need to know is retail boxes/dl *(non oem) figures. How many people that had W7 (or earlier OS) did buy the new OS. That's a better estimate of the success of the OS. Around me, no one made the move. P.S also beside how many of the licences account for the "free pirate give away program ?"

Note Windows store :{{{...such as CBS, ABC News, ABC Family, Engadget, Flixster, OWN (Oprah Winfrey Network), Vimeo and my (current) personal favorite - Top Gear.}}}
Great ! Did you know that they all already had a web site before ??

RE: Wait a minute ....
By max_payne on 11/29/2012 2:23:16 PM , Rating: 2
Now that's a more believable story, from an independent research firm

Indeed, since its launch, Windows 8 has captured just over half (58 percent) of Windows computing device unit sales, compared to the 83 percent Windows 7 accounted for four weeks after that launch. Then again, Windows 8 tablet sales have been almost non-existent, with unit sales representing less than 1 percent of all Windows 8 device sales to date.

This is bad news
By Kaleid on 11/28/2012 4:02:09 PM , Rating: 3
As now we will more likely get more tablet/cellphone crap on the desktop.

Windows is transforming the same way games did a few years ago, they are made for multiple formats and for this none of them become really good.

By lolmuly on 11/28/2012 1:04:13 PM , Rating: 2
it seemed to me that almost all off the shelf computers you see in stores this season are windows 8.

Windows 7 was also an October release, however (again just my perspective) it seemed like there were still maybe half of the machines at local retailers with vista on them.

Could the faster transition (and marginally better economy) account for this? in other words: are these all just OEM sales?

What's the fuss?
By randygrenier on 11/28/2012 1:49:49 PM , Rating: 2
Don't see what the fuss is about. You still have a Windows 7 desktop in Windows 8 minus the start button. You can launch any Windows 7 app from the new interface, and you can pin any Windows 7 app to the new interface wherever you like. You can also launch apps within the Windows 7 desktop--just pin them to the taskbar or create shortcuts on the desktop like before. No worries.

Oh yeah, and this nonsense that you can't close apps in Windows 8... Duh! Just grap the top of the app screen (it works with a mouse too), and drag it down. App closes.

Black Friday effect
By CZroe on 11/28/2012 4:09:14 PM , Rating: 2
"In its first month of sales Windows 8 has moved 40 million licenses, ... outpacing that of Windows 7, the previous sales record-holder."

Uhh, that's clearly because of all the cheap computers that sell like hotcakes on Black Friday. My mother hasn't even turned hers on.

By 91TTZ on 11/28/2012 10:30:47 PM , Rating: 2
I think the real problem in subjects such as this is people who feel the need to force their views on others. It's an immature, self-centered thought process that invades politics and just about every other aspect of life. Self-centered people don't like others to have the ability to make their own decisions. They think that what they believe should be adopted by everyone. In politics you see this every day:

People may not like guns or have any use for guns so they don't want anyone else to own them either.

They might be straight and not have any desire to marry someone of the same sex so they feel the need to block the ability of gay people to get married.

They might drive a pickup truck or a hybrid and have no desire to own another type. Therefore they support legislation that limits ownership or development of other types of cars that they feel are unnecessary. "Sports cars/Pickup trucks just waste gas and should be banned"

On the other hand you have people who support freedom of choice, even if other people's choices are different.

You have pro-gun people who think that people should be allowed to own guns if they wish. They also think that if people don't want to own guns they shouldn't have to.

You have open-minded people that support gay marriage. It might not be their thing and be of no benefit to them but they support the ability of gay people to get married.

You have people who may be a fan of one particular type of car (such as electric cars, sports cars, or pickup trucks) that support the ability of people to choose what kind of car to drive.

In this current debate you have people trying to defend the act of forcing people to use certain customizations in an OS. They say that they like it so others should just get used to it. They'll usually claim that their preference is "progress" and that everyone who doesn't agree is a luddite. They might like the Start Screen so they feel that everyone should be forced to adopt it. They might like the Metro UI so they feel that everyone should have to use it and there should be no way around it. This is a strange belief, since Windows has always been customizable. If you wanted to use the Classic Interface instead of the Windows XP/Vista native interface you could choose it.

I'm a person who believes in choice and I'll go out of my way to defend your ability to have a choice even if your taste is different than mine. I'm not arguing that Microsoft should do away with the Start screen, I think that you should be able to choose either. In fact I really don't care how you customize your computer- it's your computer! But to see the self-centered mentality that some people exhibit is just depressing.

By chromal on 11/29/2012 10:51:03 AM , Rating: 2
Goddamn, I am tired of seeing Balmer's cherub-like grin every time the front page loads. Please choose what headline photos you publish with more taste.

No Need to Hate 8
By hood6558 on 11/29/2012 4:44:35 PM , Rating: 2
I had a problem with Windows 8 at the beginning when I first downloaded the consumer preview, but since reading more about all the tangible benefits, I was willing to give it another try, albeit with the free third-party StartButton/Classic Shell installed, which makes the U.I. default to the Desktop, complete with a functional Start button. Now the Metr...I mean "Start Screen" is just an optional place to go, where you can configure it to run any apps or no apps at all, I suppose. It's a good place to access news, sports, and entertainment, if you want, or you never have to go there if the Desktop is your preference. Most of the apps are free anyway, so if you have a use for some of them, that's an added bonus you can't get with previous versions. Other than that, it feels a lot like Windows 7, with a bunch of nice new features that make life better, like built-in virtual disc mounting, a sweet new file operations dialog with graphical interface, backup and drive imaging, automatic SSD tweaks, etc. etc. So far everything just works, with minimum fuss, and all my favorite 3rd party programs and games run better than ever. it took me about 2 minutes to make 8 behave and feel like 7, from download to finish, so anyone can do it, and there goes your main reason to hate 8. Trust me, it's better.

By vision33r on 11/29/2012 5:29:43 PM , Rating: 2
$40 OS selling better than a $149 upgrade. That's news?

Please remove that photo!
By woody1 on 12/1/2012 9:23:43 AM , Rating: 2
I beg you, please remove that photo of Ballmer's tongue. It creeps me out every time I look at this site.

By crazyirish on 12/1/2012 11:04:27 PM , Rating: 2
Give's me the willies.

The hard numbers
By geddarkstorm on 12/3/2012 2:53:45 PM , Rating: 2
I think people might be interested in the hard, independent numbers from the NPD:

Not even remotely as rosy as Microsoft is trying to make it sound; in fact far behind Windows 7 sales in its first 4 week period. Of course, this is measuring POS numbers, rather than licenses for upgrades (or whatever the Microsoft numbers are, they; as they aren't that specific).

True lies
By marraco on 12/7/2012 11:06:32 AM , Rating: 2
Just lies. Consumers didn't bought those licenses. MS sold more licenses to OEM for the same price, just to brag. But OEM's had not sold those licenses to consumers.

What matter are statistic data from Google, Steam, and other web sites. They know how many access are from real users.

By Argon18 on 11/28/2012 4:46:42 PM , Rating: 1
Why are there so many photos of Steve Ballmer making revolting faces?? If this is the new face of Microsoft, I'm not buying!!

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