Analysts Claiming Windows 8 Will Only Have 12% Of The Market By 2016, Is That Really A Fair Assessment?

Alright, so a new report has shown up claiming that Windows 8 tablets will remain a distant third in the tablet market, behind both the iPad and Android tablets.

Gartner analyst Carolina Milanesi says that Microsoft will only get 4% of the tablet market this year.

I can honestly believe that, especially considering Windows 8 tablets won’t hit until this year is basically over. Considering they will likely not show up until 2 months before 2012 ends, that is actually quite GOOD.

That’s where the analyst ends the good news, claiming that even by 2016 only about 12% of the tablet market will run Windows 8.

This was all found on a pretty interesting article about how Windows 8 will fare, it also highlights that despite this bad news, the Enterprise world may really like Windows 8. I agree with this point, but I’m not going to focus on the rest of that article, though I do suggest you read it for yourself.

Instead, I want to talk a little about Windows 8. I understand how analysts work and that they are using known patterns and initial interest in Windows tablets as part of their basis and I don’t have anything against this analyst or how the conclusion was drawn, the analyst was just doing their job after all.

My only real question though is whether right now is the right time for truly analyzing the possible success or failure of Windows 8. It seems more like gypsy work considering just how different of an animal Windows 8 is.

One reason that it is such a different situation this time around is that I’d wager that the vast majority of non-techies out there have no clue what Windows 8 is.If you said, would you like a Windows 8 tablet in the future, they’d think of the current state of Windows thrown right on a tablet like with Windows 7.

Understandably only certain niches, like enterprise, find that of any use.

Now if you said, Windows 8 now looks and works more like Windows Phone, would interest change? Due to low market penetration of the WP platform, probably not.

The point is that Windows 8 isn’t anything consumers have dealt with before. It’s a little Windows 7 and a little Windows Phone. Not everyone is going to like its dual-nature, but I think the biggest thing is how Microsoft is going to market the device.

Until I see a clearer picture of Microsoft’s marketing campaign for its new tablets I am going to hold off directly making a guess as to how well they will do in the tablet market. Honestly though, the biggest worry MS has is probably the iPad. My wife loves her Android tablet, and I’m sure there are many others out there that feel the same, but honestly, Android isn’t THAT optimized for the tablet world. Sure, the OS is, but the apps?

Apple has done a very good job here, optimizing many apps specifically for its iPad. Windows 8 doesn’t exist on the smartphone, and though it shares similarities with Windows Phone, every app in its market will be built optimized for Windows 8. I can really see good marketing as a way to break Android tablet support and put Windows 8 in front of Google here.

As for the iPad? Again, up to Microsoft’s marketing strategy. If they can find a way to express WHY Windows 8 is better than iPad, and what it can do differently, it might have a chance against. Honestly though, MS probably doesn’t plan to dethrone the iPad, just provide a new path of grow for users that haven’t made their mind up on tablets.

I certainly fit into the group. Not sure if I care about tablets, but if anyone can make me want to consider one- it’s probably the folks at Redmond.

What do you think?

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