My sister was happily plodding along on Windows XP (the luddite, right?). Until the fateful day her pc died. The replacement came with Vista – she hates it, I refuse to support it, it is just so bloody annoying.
I thought Office 2007 was ultra-frustrating the way they shuffled around the commands to make them harder to find. But Vista is way worse. We spent half an hour messing around just so she could download a program off t’intarwebs. Hello? its 2009! we download stuff off the internet! Eventually one of the bazillion settings in Internet Explorer (she uses Firefox exclusively) that I changed finally fixed it. Sadly there were no ‘That action could be a security threat, if you really want to download xxx then you should change yyy here ‘ handy warning/links.
We eventually got that working, I’m not sure how much of her life she would have wasted if I had not been able to help. Then there was some other problem, at that I had to say sorry, I have other things I need to do.
For a competent computer user Vista is a scourge. Every time I have used it (usually helping someone who has a problem they wouldn’t have in XP) I have come close to launching the pc out of the window.
So to the new era…
Everything I have read about Win 7 compares it to Vista, and often it’s to Vista as it was when it launched 3 years ago.
- Win 7 has better driver support than Vista (had at release)
- Win 7 has better security than Vista (had at release)
- Win 7 has better hardware compatibility than Vista (had at release)
- etc etc, you get the idea
By punting out a complete lemon 3 years ago MS have given themselves a fairly easy to sell ‘improvement’ story. Have you ever done that – deliberately underperformed at the initial test so you can show better improvement? (Like the folks who go the weight watchers with a pocketful of coins, and their heaviest jumper the first week.)
No one seems to be comparing Win 7 to its main competitor – a mature installation of Windows XP. So mature, any of those new features trumpeted in Win 7 will probably already be solved by some downloaded utility if needed.
Win XP is the biggest competitor by dint of the largest installed base, but Apple is probably the most dangerous competitor. A shift from any Windows to Mac OS is a big loss for anyone who sells primarily Windows software, like MS for example.
Anyway, I foresee Windows 7 getting an easier ride simply because people will be relieved that it is better than Vista. But so is almost any OS from the last 10 years.
The Codematic website still gets traffic from win 3.xx machines. Win 3.11 is a damn sight easier to use than Vista. (win xp:65%, Vista:17%, win 3.xx:1.5% in Sept 09)
Do you think that Win 7 will benefit from Vista being so crap? Do you think the boost to Win 7 sales will be enough to cover the embarrassment of Vista?
Do you think they will continue this alternate lemon/loss leader followed by acceptable product in Windows versions? do you think they will extend it to other areas of the business, or do you think they already did with Office 2007??