Is Windows 8 Sales Well Below Expectations?

  • November 17, 2012
Windows 8



If you were to believe what Windows’ evangelist Paul Thurrott had to say, this may be the case.

Here is Paul’s take on the situation:

[quote] Sales of Windows 8 PCs are well below Microsoft’s internal projections and have been described inside the company as disappointing. But here’s the catch: The software giant blames the slow start on lackluster PC maker designs and availability, further justifying its new Surface strategy. But Windows 8’s market acceptance can be blamed on many factors.

One of my most trusted sources at Microsoft confirmed Windows 8’s weak start this week. And with all of the drama surrounding Windows 8 and the recent, unexpected departure of Windows chief Steven Sinofsky, rumors are sure to swirl. But looked at logically, some trends emerge.

Microsoft blames the PC makers. My source cited to me the PC makers’ “inability to deliver,” a damning indictment that I think nicely explains why the firm felt it needed to start making its own PC and device hardware. In a related conversation with Microsoft the week after BUILD, I floated the notion that the company’s retail store expansion could one day lead to it becoming the number one in-store experience for PC makers’ wares, a not-so-subtle change in their relationships. This idea had clearly been considered as a possible future, leading me to believe that Microsoft has indeed soured on its traditional partner relationships and is looking to shake things up.[/quote]

See also:

  1. Ballmer: Sales Of Microsoft’s Surface RT Tab ‘Modest’
  2. Windows Phone 8 Reviews

But before Apple’s fanboys start rejoicing, here is what another Windows’ evangelist, Ed Bott had to say before the launch of Windows 8:

[quote] A few years later, in one of the great ironies that makes this business so much fun, PC World sister publication InfoWorld was collecting hundreds of thousands of names for its “Save XP” petition.

The amusing thing about all this is that XP didn’t need saving. It’s still alive and well today, and will be supported by Microsoft until April 2014. Despite the early scorn and dismissal, XP turned out to be the long-term support version, the one that businesses adopted and stuck with. And corporate buyers are moving, finally, to Windows 7, where they will be able to park entire Fortune 500 enterprises until 2020.

So what happened to Windows XP? How did its reputation improve after those early scornful reactions?

Mostly, it was time that did all the healing. As consumers picked up new PCs running Windows XP, they got used to the interface. Microsoft released a series of service packs that fixed bugs and (notably with SP2) improved the generally woeful security of the initial release. People got used to the bright colors of the “Fisher-Price interface,” and eventually it didn’t seem so garish.

The hardware caught up too. In the next two years, even the worst-case estimates suggest that the PC industry will sell 500 million new PCs, many of them equipped with touchscreens on which the Windows 8 interface will make perfect sense.

The Microsoft that released Windows 8 is much more disciplined than the one that shipped Windows XP. I expect that Windows 8 will get frequent updates, including one or two that will make the interface more flexible for developers and end users.

I’m also willing to bet that Windows 9 arrives in two years, with Windows 10 probably coming two years after that. Businesses will studiously ignore those new releases, of course. Just as they always do.[/quote]

Posted by | Posted at November 17, 2012 15:44 | Tags: , , , ,
Storm is a technology enthusiast, who resides in the UK. He enjoys reading and writing about technology.

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