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Oh, No – Yet Another Windows Release?

Two years ago I wrote: Windows Seven in 2010. Does Anyone Still Care?

I simply don’t get it: Vista is barely out, nobody seems to like it, CIO’s refuse to upgrade, analyst firms tell them to wait, individual users who tried it switch back to XP, others time their new PC purchase so they can still get an XP machine – generally speaking Vista was as poorly received as the ill-fated Windows ME.

Apple is gaining market share, the major computer manufacturers are offering Linux PC’s, the Web OS concept is getting popular, applications are already on the Web – can anyone clearly see the shape of personal computing in 2012? (Yes, I know MS plans for 2010, I’m just adding the customary delay.) Will it still matter what OS we use to get on the Internet? How can Microsoft be so out of touch?

I was right and I was wrong.  Right in the assessment, but not foreseeing that Vista would turn out to be such a disaster, that Microsoft would be better off releasing its final version under a new name:

Make no mistake, the accelerated move to Windows 7 is a marketing decision, not a technical one. Vista became such a disaster that Microsoft finally realized no amount of marketing can save it: it was better the abandon the shipwreck and start with a clean slate, a “new” Windows product.

And so it happened, and millions of Vista victims end up paying the ransom to get out of the trap and get the version of the OS that actually works: Windows 7.  Which means by late 2009, but mostly 2010 we’ll be where we were supposed to be in 2007.   But now, as people count down the days till they can escape Vista and upgrade to Windows 7, Mary-Jo Foley who is always amongst the first to scoop out Microsoft’s plans is already talking about Windows 8, as early as 2011 or 2012.

It’s almost like Microsoft got infiltrated by secret agents who plot to alienate most of their customers.  Because it’s hard to imagine why on Earth we would need yet-another operating system.  Windows is not an application, it’s a friggin’ operating system whose job is to get us into applications and get out of the way. Assuming Win7 finally works, MS should leave us alone licking our Vista-inflicted wounds, instead of dumping another OS on us.  Have they not learned from the Vista fiasco?  Users don’t want to upgrade their OS every two years, they just want to use their computers and be left alone.  How can Microsoft be so out of touch?

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