Finally, the world is seeing price/performance competition in client OS. It’s been a long time coming…
“Microsoft’s OS license fees will fall to $10 to $30 for each device down from $40 today. Those concessions, however, are just the beginning.”
Obviously, small cheap computers running */Linux forced this. At the same time that Wintel is feeling the pinch, the world of ordinary users, businesses and governments are all appreciating that FLOSS, GNU/Linux and Android/Linux have saved them from monopoly. The fallout will be enormous in 2014 and beyond. The world saving $billions annually forever is a huge pile of cash saved. Is it enough to save the planet or to feed the hungry? No, but there are other benefits too: better utilization of hardware, no arbitrary restrictions bundled in the EULA, more flexibility, closing of the Digital Divide, freedom from lock-in, and just plain freedom. This means more profits from IT suppliers all over the planet instead of M$ and “partners”. This means Intel will have to compete on price/performance too. This means huge savings in energy and waste everywhere. Even if M$ makes its price $0 or pays people to use their OS, they never again will have ~90% market share.
So, all in all, this is a good thing and will make the world a better place. The idea, that M$’s stuff was the standard technology of the world and essential, will finally die. That lie that crippled the world for decades will do so no longer and the world of IT will run and jump higher and farther faster. It’s all good.