Microsoft has always marched at the beat of its own drum, but now that smartphones and tablets dawn the decline of the PC era, it just has to leverage with the trend. Otherwise, it will continue to lose the better fraction of the market to Apple, if not lose the game altogether.
After waiting for quite some time now, Microsoft finally competes in the booming tablet market. In the form of the upcoming Window 8, the tech giant gave its operating system a 360-degree makeover in order to cater both desktop and tablet computers. That being said, it has both touchscreen capabilities and mouse-keyboard functionality. It released a preview last week, chiefly aimed at developers, but granted as a pre-release, it is yet to have any support from the company. If you’re willing to take the risk, you can go ahead and download it.
“Microsoft is taking a lead position in business, tying its desktop offering to its mobile offering via Windows 8. That could be attractive to a lot of businesses a year from now when they’re updating not only their PCs, but their phones as well,” said Trefishe analyst Cem Ozkaynak in a Boston Herald report.
Moreover, PCMag’s Peter Pachal reported that Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer said Windows 8 got as much as over 500,000 downloads in the first half of the first day it went public. The statistics doesn’t seem like mere bubble as developers themselves admit that they adore what they’re seeing so far.
Even Wall Street has high hopes for the new operating system. “Much of Wall Street remains concerned about the tablet’s impact on Microsoft’s Windows franchise,” says Philip Winslow of Credit Suisse in a MarketWatch article. He added that Windows 8 “will have a more meaningful position in tablets than the market appreciates — which we believe will serve as a catalyst for the stock.”
MarketWatch also quoted Morgan Stanley analyst Adam Holt in the same article saying he believes Windows 8 “will be a product catalyst — helping Microsoft build a meaningful tablet and ultra-PC presence.”
Here’s another one from analyst Ross Rubin in an article by onlykent.com: “Windows 8 is the first version in a while people are excited about for a reason other than fixing the last version of Windows.”
The article also cited a tweet from Indie developer @stroughtonsmith: “I think the real thing about Windows 8 isn’t that it’s an iPad killer. It’s a non-touchscreen PC killer. Microsoft’s own post-PC world.”
We’ve also got Chris Burn from Slashgear saying some pretty things about Windows 8: “What I’m seeing here is not simply another contender in the already well-dominated by Apple tablet market. I’m seeing a whole new door being opened up for operating systems to thrive in the keyboard-less touch-display world.”
Still from Slashgear, Chris Davies puts a good deals of confidence in Windows 8 as the best operating system Microsoft has ever had in years: “It’s still early days yet for Windows 8, but it’s not too great a stretch to suggest that the new OS is shaping up to be the best work the company has done on its mainstream platform in years. Commentators need to lose their obsession with iPad “killers”: Windows 8 demonstrates that there’s more than one way to shape a slate.”
Meanwhile, Apple has been holding up the roll-out of the iPad 3. It has every reason to do so, or let’s say had. It doesn’t have a competitor that can stand on a level pegging with it, but now that Microsoft’s got Windows 8 about to run wild really soon, Apple’s game plan might have to change.
There’s a good chance that Microsoft’s Windows 8 is genuinely lethal to the iPad.