There is still much debate over Microsoft’s new Operating System, Windows 8, and whether Microsoft has too radically changed the interface that users have come to rely on as part of their daily lives for the past 20 years. The familiar start button? Gone. Standard desktop view? Gone. Microsoft is opting for a more flexible, customizable approach to tools and apps. It could be because they’re preparing for the emerging tablet market to take over; or, perhaps Microsoft feels the need to ‘do something revolutionary’. But, with big risk, comes big risk….not necessarily reward. In the New York IT consulting world, we are constantly hearing the strong opinions of our users; at present there has been a tepid foray into Windows 8, making it even more important to keep an eye on what Microsoft intends to do.
What Microsoft Sees
Widely reported, and here in PCWorld, the number of tablets has consistently risen in recent years and will continue to do so. The numbers reported, and their near future trajectory, look to increase. As such, Microsoft has taken to bundling Windows 8 with their tablets,Microsoft Surface Tablet. Together with other leading tablet brands (HP, Lenovo), Windows 8, like it or not, will find its way to the mainstream business marketplace. This is important when considering your future IT support resource.
Though this market penetration is inevitable, Windows 8 is getting plenty of current negative buzz from its user base. And Microsoft itself has been self-critical, a telling indication that there are changes to the new OS on the horizon. They are already working on a new version, “Windows Blue”, which they will likely rush to market. Our bet is that they’ll try to balance some of the features of the older operating systems, like the start button, so they can reach the mainstream users’ comfort zone, while also continue to move toward touch screen computing.
Today, Windows 7 still seems to be the best bet for reliability and predictability. But sooner or later, Microsoft’s jump into the future is something most of us will need to engage in.