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Windows 8 Did Not Cause PC Sales Slump
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ChrisMurphy
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ChrisMurphy,
User Rank: Author
4/15/2013 | 3:45:15 PM
re: Windows 8 Did Not Cause PC Sales Slump
I'm also surprised we haven't seen more touchscreen laptops, Gareth. How many times have you seen someone tap a screen? Even with one, though, I would want to keep my tablet. Still a different use case for me.
Mike_Acker
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Mike_Acker,
User Rank: Apprentice
4/15/2013 | 11:40:03 AM
re: Windows 8 Did Not Cause PC Sales Slump
good write up

desktop PCs are a particular class of tool and I don't see the need for them going away . but with industry still struggling to get rid of XP it's easy to see that win8 is a huge obstacle to progress in this change over

digging deeper though we have to discuss other points. one of which is Windows is not a secure system and is unsuitable for commercial use. another is windows is just an obnoxious mess. my daughter is enrolled in an onlune-U and windows office 2010 is required. she struggles with the software a lot and wishes she had bought a Mac.

a lot of people prefer Macs. I don't know about that so much; I'm a Linux user. I switched about 6 months ago and I really feel sorry for folks still struggling with the WinMess

msft will sink in the winmess and join EastMan Kodak et.al. -- in the dust bin.
Palpatine
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Palpatine,
User Rank: Apprentice
4/15/2013 | 9:43:20 AM
re: Windows 8 Did Not Cause PC Sales Slump
Good luck with selling apps to 3% of market share that uses 8 with the Store while your competitors overcome you selling competing applications targeting the 100% of Windows user share including the 3% of Windows 8.
If Ballmer did not see it coming, it should not be CEO even of an hot dog kiosk.
Palpatine
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Palpatine,
User Rank: Apprentice
4/15/2013 | 7:41:14 AM
re: Windows 8 Did Not Cause PC Sales Slump
It will be funny to read this article again shortly after MS collapsed and went out of business because of Windows 8 disaster.
Gareth Davies
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Gareth Davies,
User Rank: Apprentice
4/15/2013 | 2:32:27 AM
re: Windows 8 Did Not Cause PC Sales Slump
I am running Windows 8 on a 13 inch Samsung touchscreen ultrabook (laptop). It feels like a tablet that can do all the word processing/file management of windows, with a built in keyboard and stand.

I tried a dockable tablet but found the screen was top-heavy and awkward when docked. Plus you get less hardware bang for your buck with tablets (vs laptops) and they tend to be all about graphics.

Note I use my Windows 8 laptop in conjunction with a Samsung GS3 phone running Android. Lots of great apps sync between Android and Windows 8 (like Chrome, Dropbox, Evernote, 8 Tracks, and Hootsuite).

Unless you have a touchscreen I can see Windows 8 being a major frustration with a mouse (though I have heard users say otherwise). But with a touchscreen, 'Metro' is a surprisingly snappy, bug free, beautiful and liberating experience, worth the minimal (and fun) effort to relearn Windows with a touchscreen.

Live tiles have huge potential for utility/productivity, and I hope developers are catching on slowly with Windows 8 (not sure how accessible the platform is to developers). I don't miss any apps from the Apple Store or Android Market, but I also don't play a ton of games on my computer.

I would guess Microsoft holds the keys to the much heralded Enterprise market until someone challenges the MS Office suite. Windows 8 integrates much better with Office than Android or iPad, and Microsoft is definitely catching up in terms of 'fun'.

Tablets haven't caught up yet in word processing because of the touchscreen's lack of type-ability. I personally think touchscreen laptops (no bigger than 13 inch or the screen is too far away) are a great solution!

Makes you wonder why Apple's Macbook has never come in a touchscreen version? The answer is sadly: Apple wants you to buy two products.

-Gareth
CopyingAppleIsDangerous
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CopyingAppleIsDangerous,
User Rank: Apprentice
4/14/2013 | 8:59:59 AM
re: Windows 8 Did Not Cause PC Sales Slump
I read this article very carefully. Twice. I think it is wrong. The author uses the same argument (apology) that is currently being used by several authors around the Internet: Blame the tablets. The problem is that, if you look at the reduction in PC sales, there is no complementary increase in tablet sales.Furthermore, if you look at Windows 8 tablet sales, they are horrible.

So all of these consumers did not buy a PC because they were going to buy tablets instead, but did not buy the tablets? That doesn't make sense.

Furthermore, it *is* true that PC's have superfluous computing power these days. But that was true before Windows 7, which sold fine.

And lets not forget that, for whatever it is worth, iPads are selling just fine.

What happened with PC's is that (1) Microsoft owns most of the OS market (2) People hate Windows 8.

So, I think it would be more correct to say something like this: PC users currently have more or less powerful older computers. Upgrading is a luxury, not a necessity, and such users do upgrade occasionally. [I bought two extra Windows 7 laptops that I still don't use, for example]. If such users were on the fence about whether to buy a new PC, the detestable nature of Windows 8 convinced them to keep what they had.
wzachmann023
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wzachmann023,
User Rank: Apprentice
4/14/2013 | 3:17:21 AM
re: Windows 8 Did Not Cause PC Sales Slump
I've been following all this with considerable interest. I think there's a decent chance that Windows 8 will prove to be much more successful than the current industry consensus projects for it. It certainly is a somewhat jarring transition for users and takes some getting used to, but it is also a very nicely designed interface that is quite innovative and provides a very different UI that works very well for tablets, phones and such (and is very usable on a more traditional desktop system once one gets used to it). I think that Windows 8 (and successors) may eventually do much better than most folks currently expect it to.
AcrossMountains
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AcrossMountains,
User Rank: Apprentice
4/13/2013 | 8:04:43 PM
re: Windows 8 Did Not Cause PC Sales Slump
I agree with what you and what robharrydean posted, particularly the second bullet. When I bought a new desktop a year ago, I decided to do so when Windows 7 was still available. I was using Windows XP and after 8 1/2 years, it was time to look for a new one. I looked at what I was reading about Windows 8 and decided it was more of a learning curve for me than I cared for. If I felt that way, imagine how business must feel about the time that it would take for their employees to learn and decrease productivity. It's not at all uncommon to me to go to a place that is still using XP. I've seen a lot more with XP, than with 7, none with 8.

Now would be a good time for Apple to have Microsoft for lunch, if only Apple's mindset about how it conducts business would permit it.
robharrydean
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robharrydean,
User Rank: Apprentice
4/13/2013 | 3:51:12 PM
re: Windows 8 Did Not Cause PC Sales Slump
Many factors have combined to squeeze Microsoft. Many of those factors were beyond any likelihood of mitigation by Windows 8. However Windows 8 has still in my opinion doubly failed: it has weakened Microsoft's appeal to its core constituency and legacy users, whilst simultaneously failing to make an effective pitch to the 'new form factors' tablet/mobile ecosystem.

I suggest that Microsoft's two greatest mistakes are these:
1. They branded RT & Phone as 'Windows', confusing the brand identity. They should have branded them 'Microsoft' with sub-brands (Surface, xPhone, whatever): brand identities have huge momentum and trying to steer them too abruptly tends to simply turn the vehicle over.
2. They gave away their huge advantage in user-inertia. Lots of regular users and businesses stick with long-lineage systems not because the alternatives are unappealing but out of reluctance to face a disruptive transition. Metro/ No Start Menu makes the prospect of Windows 8 feel potentially disruptive, which gratuitously squanders that huge inertial advantage: this not only an issue for the OS but for many consumers will simply be a disincentive to refreshing the hardware, in so far as Windows 8 will tend to be pre-installed.

In this context, Windows 8 could be considered to have likely made a substantial negative contribution to the appeal of PCs, and to have turned an opportunity to ameliorate the deteriorating sales situation into something of a nosedive.
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