To add to this chaos we have an operating system that is failing as both a desktop OS and as a mobile OS. If Microsoft’s Windows 8 or RT was more of a success we would possible seem more PC sales. After taking multiple trips to different stores like Best Buy, CompUSA and others you can see the reluctance in the eyes and demeanors of consumers looking at these new products. They want to know why they are paying so much for hardware that has technology that they do not need (or in many cases want). While some might be interested in having a touch screen on their laptop, the majority does not care about this and only see it as paying more money for something they do not need (the average price of desktops and laptops has gone up, not down).
Some are also noticing that the average resolution on new notebooks has dropped despite the use of terms like HD Display they are only getting 1366x728 (which is only 720P HD). We asked about this and found that many consumers feel cheated by this type of labeling. To them HD means 1080p (1920x1080) and calling 720p “HD” is just not cutting it. Microsoft is alienating their consumer base by forcing the cloud and modern UI on people, and also by changing their stance on the way Windows works. We were concerned about this happening when we first heard about the removal of the start button, media center, the heavy shift to cloud services and a few other items.
Microsoft was and still is playing a very dangerous game in making this abrupt change in the way Windows operates. They might have felt that this was what customers wanted, but they misread the data and failed to execute the actual data that they did have on hand. Instead they built up a fantasy land thinking that by simply putting out an OS and trying to lock it to new hardware people would buy it. That strategy did not work out so well even with massive discounts and special offers when Windows 8 and RT were released.
We expect to see “PC” (meaning Windows based systems) sales to continue to falter until we see hardware prices stabilize and computer manufacturers stop shoveling hardware that does not make sense into their products and charging more than the device is really worth. This will put the Windows PC back in line with where they have always been, powerful, scalable, flexible and less expensive than the “other guy”. During this transition Microsoft has to bend a little on their push as a cloud services company. Windows 8 could have been a great OS, if Microsoft would have put even a little more thought into who was actually using the OS and what they expected of it. This means they have to re-envision Windows 8 as a desktop OS with touch as a secondary function or allow this as an option when installed. If Microsoft and their partners can do these things in the next 6-10 months they can bring back sales, if not well… things will continue to decline until they do.
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