Robert Pogson

One man, closing all the windows.

Daily Archives / Tuesday, December 21, 2010

  • Dec 21 / 2010
  • 2

M$ Blinks

Coca-Cola blinked when they introduced “new-Coke”. Rumour has it that M$ will introduce a new version of that other OS to run on x86/amd64 and ARM. It will not be “7″. Perhaps it will be vapourware to further delay GNU/Linux on ARM. Who knows? Who cares? The world wants small cheap computers and does neither want nor need to wait. GNU/Linux runs on ARM today in many millions of installations.

M$ should have stuck with its cash-cows. Now they will have new problems:

  1. the new version, if it will run well on ARM, will show the world that XP, Vista and “7″ were bug-ridden bloatware,
  2. “partners” like Intel and retailers who promoted that other OS will feel they were paid to lie to consumers and the consumers will know it,
  3. competing on price and performance in a highly competitive market will really cut into their margin,
  4. making copy and paste work, and
  5. ARM will be endorsed as “good enough” and suck the life out of Atom etc. This will hasten the arrival of ARM on the desktop.

I like it. Even if it turns out to be total vapour, it’s a great story. If it’s a complete re-write and done well, that other OS will crash and burn leaving a huge vacuum of credibility for GNU/Linux to grow. If it’s a port of a cut-down version of that other OS, how will the salesmen promote it? “Try our new low-calorie OS. We threw out all the crapware you have been paying for the last decade. We hope you don’t mind.”

  • Dec 21 / 2010
  • 0

All-in, Tentatively

Gavin Clarke and Mary-Jo Foley discuss hits and misses of 2010 for M$. We all know “the cloud” is the future and Ballmer has declared M$ all-in but both found “Office Web-Apps” a confusing plate of spaghetti: documentation, licensing, complexity, and usability are all suspect. M$ has a foot on the dock and a foot on the boat. M$ and its customers are going to be all-wet if they don’t decide that the cloud works. Mary-Jo said she was not able to simply share a document… How much like the cloud is that?

Again, M$ has handicapped itself and its customers by tying obsolete technology, that other OS, with their future. It’s a millstone, not a vessel, to carry the world of IT forward.

Besides the web-apps, they discuss Silverlight, IE9, “7″, “8″, “kin” and lack of software for tablets. “7″ and Kinect are the only clear winners and those win by default, not necessarily on merits. IMHO this will be the last year M$ gets a free ride on anything. Their share continues to decline and the share will drop more rapidly in 2011 when the dam holding back tablets bursts. People want tablets for the freedom they gain and M$ will try to withhold freedom or charge a high price for it, neither of which will succeed. Neither XP nor “7″ run on these ARMed tablets and the x86 tablets promised sometime in 2011 will be heavy and hot. ARM + GNU/Linux will be another 100 million devices ahead by that time and well accepted.

UPDATE Mary-Jo and Ed Bott report that M$ claims 1.5million WP7 phones have been sold. It may be that the channel partners have swallowed the bait… No word on activations by consumers.