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90% of new Windows consumer client installations to be Vista Home-based in 2007

Microsoft has lofty ambitions for its next generation Windows Vista operating system as witnessed by statements made by the company in early October. Today, IDC issued some new projections for Windows Vista including the notion that over 90 million units of the operating system will ship in 2007 worldwide. That figure far outpaces Microsoft's assessment of 67 million units in the first year of availability for Windows XP.

"After a long wait, the adoption of Windows Vista will take place almost immediately among consumers, while businesses will follow a decidedly more conservative adoption curve," says Al Gillen, research VP of System Software at IDC.

On the consumer side, Vista Home Basic is expected to garner 67% of Vista purchases while Vista Home Premium will account for 30%. The enthusiast-oriented Vista Ultimate will account for 2% of the product mix with just 1% of consumers choosing Vista Business for use in home deployments.

For businesses, Vista Business will account for 82% of Vista deployments while Vista Enterprise will capture the remaining 18%.

Overall, IDC projects that 90% of new Windows client installations for home users will be comprised of Vista Home Basic/Vista Home Premium during the first year. On the business side, Vista Business/Vista Enterprise will account for just 35% of new client installations during the first year – that number rises to 80% during the second year of availability.

But while consumers buying new PCs will pretty much be forced into using Windows Vista after the start of the year, businesses are likely to be a bit more discriminating. Businesses typically wait until at least the first service pack for a new Windows operating system is released before they do any large roll-outs throughout the company.

Gartner suggests that companies should spend as much as 18 months testing a new operating system before moving to large-scale deployments. With Vista being launched for businesses tomorrow, now is the time to begin the testing phase (if companies haven't already done so with earlier versions of Vista). "If companies do decide to upgrade the biggest barrier will be application compatibility - 80 per cent of your applications will work and 20 per cent won't work. The vast majority of customers we speak to are looking at 2008 to upgrade but they need to start planning now," said Frank Foxall of Windows migration specialist Camwood.

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By crystal clear on 11/30/2006 6:33:27 AM , Rating: 2
03 November, 2006 02:33 PM EST
Microsoft sets 30 November for Business Launch of Vista, Office 2007
Posted By: Michael Silver, Research VP
There's lots of confusion around the various dates of Windows Vista and Office 2007. There are many dates to keep track of and they all mean different things. Here are the ones we're following:

Select and Open price lists: 1 November 2006 for both products. Anyone with SA on either product in effect on 1 Nov 2006 gets the rights to both products.

Release to manufacturing (RTM): Not yet announced for either product.

Availability to volume license customers: At least a week, but perhaps longer, after RTM.

Broad availability: Said to be 30 January 2007 for Windows Vista, this is when the product can be purchased by consumers and shipped preloaded by OEMs. Office likely similar.

Business Launch Event: 30 November 2006 for both products.

Consumer Launch Event: Will be another joint event, in 2007, but not yet scheduled.

What does all this mean? Although it's possible that RTM will be in December, after the business launch event, that's not likely because both are on price lists as of yesterday. It's more likely that RTM will be some time this month. Could it still slip? Sure. But at this point, that's certainly less likely.

What about Gartner's prediction that Vista would be late? In April, we published research saying that Windows Vista would not be broadly available until nine to 12 months after the release of Beta 2. Beta 2 was released in late May, a little earlier than we expected at that point, which means we would have expected broad availability in late February – late April. For all the press on the topic, it appears that Microsoft will beat our prediction by a month (if they meet their 30 Jan. target). We will congratulate Microsoft as they hit their dates.

Microsoft shipping Vista and Office 2007 is great for the company and an important milestone for its customers. We have to be a little cautious in warning people that Microsoft Update helped Microsoft get the products out, probably several months earlier than they would have been able to without it (see Steve Kleynhans's post below). So organizations should continue working with applications, including the forthcoming ACT for Windows and OMPM for Office, although they should expect a stream of fixes for the first few months after availability. Microsoft beat the expectations of many in the industry, so the rest of the ecosystem is still catching up. Make sure your critical vendors will support their products on Vista in the timeframe you need.

We continue to say that waiting for SP1 is a bogus milestone at this point – for two reasons: 1) Most large companies will not be ready to deploy by the time SP1 is available anyway (there is still too much complexity in testing and preparing), and 2) Because of Microsoft Update, you’ll have the fixes to most critical issues well before SP1 ships.


By TomZ on 11/30/2006 8:03:31 AM , Rating: 2
I agree, Microsoft Update makes waiting for SP1 an ineffective strategy. Why pick such an arbitrary point to deploy Vista - it makes more sense to decide when it is right for your organization or your personal needs and wants.

"Mac OS X is like living in a farmhouse in the country with no locks, and Windows is living in a house with bars on the windows in the bad part of town." -- Charlie Miller
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