Those kinds of numbers shipping in 2011 mean the end of an era. Hardly any of the smart phones or tablets ship with M$’s software. That leaves M$ with a less than 50% share of IT in 2011. Sure, they bring in $60 billion but the share of units shipped is plunging. All the software running on ARMed smart thingies can run on x86 PCs but “8” is nowhere to be seen so M$ has only a weak response in vapourware. Apart from business desktops and notebooks and servers on LANs, M$ has become a niche player, clinging to the rock. M$ has lost the consumer space largely and the slower growth of shipments shows that.
Some predicted the dead carcass of M$ would rot on the beach for five years at least, but this is looking more like the beast has fallen off a cliff and been washed out to sea. The fall will accelerate when XP users switch to Android or GNU/Linux even on thin clients, more local apps become web apps/cloud apps, more people work at home, more workers bring their personal computing devices to work, and more workers dock their smart phones somehow. I don’t see any downside to tablets and thin clients which take up so little space on desks. I don’t see any way that Wintel can keep ARM out of the desktop/notebook space. I do see all these forces acting against Wintel in the next year or two.
see iSuppli – Global Tablet Shipments to Rise by Factor of 12 by 2015
“The so-called Wintel era is over with no CPU or OS vendors to be able to dominate the PC, tablet PC or handset markets as they did before, according to Asustek chairman Jonney Shih. The breakup of the Wintel alliance offers a brand new opportunity for system vendors to thrive again in the IT market, Shih said.”