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.