Windows Threshold Event: 6 Things To Expect - InformationWeek

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Windows Threshold Event: 6 Things To Expect
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Michael Endler
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Michael Endler,
User Rank: Author
9/30/2014 | 10:30:08 PM
Re: Nothing new for the satisfied user
"Unfortunately, manufacturers whose products benefit from device integration are ignoring the touch-first side of Windows.  They advertise iOS and Android apps.  Once in a blue moon I see Windows Phone and to an even lesser extent, the touch side of desktop Windows."

Definitely true.
Michael Endler
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Michael Endler,
User Rank: Author
9/30/2014 | 10:26:31 PM
Re: windows
@Technocrati,


Indeed! But after Halloween, OEMs won't be able to buy new Win 7 licenses from Microsoft anymore. I'm sure many of the manufacturers have amassed a supply-- but who knows how long it lasts.
Michael Endler
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Michael Endler,
User Rank: Author
9/28/2014 | 5:48:02 PM
Re: Nothing new for the satisfied user
Waqas,

Yes, I think that's fair-- to say Win 8 wasn't "tempting" enough, and that a lot of people using Windows 7 are so satisfied that they don't see a reason to upgrade.

This brings up one of the challenges for Windows 9/ Threshold. Windows 8 did poorly both because it presented usability challenges and because it didn't offer new, exciting features. Perhaps Threshold will resolve the usability issues, and reassure businesses that they won't have to retrain employees. But even if Threshold is usable, will it be persuasive to those who are still happy with Windows 7?
Michael Endler
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Michael Endler,
User Rank: Author
9/28/2014 | 5:43:35 PM
Re: windows
Waqas,

It depends how you define "gaining ground." Apple and Windows OEMs aren't always going after the same goals.

In a sense, its true that Windows hasn't really lost ground, per se, in the PC market; its market share before Windows 8 was about the same as it is today-- around 90%.

That said, the PC market is huge, and recent trends can't immediately topple long-term ones. Over the long-term, Windows built up such a commanding lead, over so many generations of machines, that it would take Apple decades (and a major change in strategy) to compete for overall share. But Apple doesn't care about overall share, and recent trends are a bit different than long-term market statistics might imply. 

One recent survey found almost 27% of consumers bought an Apple computer during the recent back-to-school period, for example. The survey found that compared to the last few years, Macs were more popular and Windows machines were less popular.

Given that most Apple computers cost more than $1000, it follows from the survey that Macs simply dominate the high-end PC market. The survey also suggests a user base that far exceeds "specific brand-conscious" consumers and "art lovers."

High-end Windows 2-in-1s, on the other hands, accounted for less than 15% of Windows consumer devices from the same period-- meaning that MacBooks and iMacs outsold 2-in-1s like the Surface Pro by at least 3 to 1.

Moreover, despite Microsoft's recent efforts to increase the number of low-cost Windows options, the survey found Chromebooks accounted for 1 out of 5 sub-$300 notebook sales. 

For years, Apple has earned most of the PC industry's profits despite its "lesser" market share. If the recent survey is representative of larger trends, I expect Apple will continue to reign supreme in this important metric. Broadly speaking, Windows OEMs sell a ton of cheap PCs to businesses and professionals, whereas Apple sells a lot of Macs to students, consumers and some professionals who have the money to be discerning. Chromebooks sell to budget-conscious people who want a simple machine. I expect Windows will continue to be the OS with the most PC market share, even if Windows 9/Threshold is only okay-- but Microsoft is certainly feeling pressure from Apple at the top and Google at the bottom.


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