Many are afraid Google knows too much and some of those may work at M$.
|% Visits from OS
|| 11/1/09 – 2/1/10
|| 11/1/10 – 2/1/11
That’s Google’s analysis of UserAgent strings from hundreds of thousands of users of Google Analytics, web sites scattered around the globe (“Data contained here comes from all websites which have opted-in anonymous data sharing with Google Analytics.”). It’s just as scientific as Net Applications and just as biased but at least we know another source of information. One thing is clear, that other OS is on a downward share of the WWW.
GNU/Linux is hanging in there, which means cranking out 10% more installations or so annually, millions to be sure. Android/Linux is taking a large share of “Other”, no doubt, taking share from M$.
What is different is how rapidly the share is changing. Up til now we had seen 1 or 2 percentage points change per annum. Now the change is much more serious. Android/Linux, in particular, has a shot at hundreds of millions of users in the next year or so and that’s a huge word-of-mouth advertising base for products other than smart phones and tablets. We already see a few netbooks running Android/Linux.
Nothing prevents Android and ARM from taking permanent share from M$ for non-mobile computing as well in thin clients, notebooks and desktops. People who do what smart phones allow them on the web will want to do the same at desks or tables. There is a market. That’s why M$ is porting to ARM, to try to head that off.
It remains to be seen how long it will take M$ to get into the game. Will it be at half-time or will the game be over by the time “8″ is released? There is room for Android/Linux to increase its rate of uptake as manufacturers catch up with demand. The popularity of the tablet caught many by surprise but they are clearly a product, along with the smart phone, whose time has come.