The problems of the world continue no matter the hopes and best wishes of any business or corporate entity. That is the reason we have so many reports of the early sales of Windows 7 being up, by as much as 234%, according to some reports, yet other reports state that PC sales are down. dissimilar to other Windows launch events through the years.
What does the industry expect? The upgrade cycle of three years ago was weak because people quickly became aware of the porcine qualities of the original release of the Windows Vista product, so underwhelming that two sets of collected updates could do nothing to remove the stigma (or smell of pork).
Now we have a Windows product that is only 5 years late and the world has lost confidence in itself. These conspire to bring an air of caution of the unknown, so that the only ones fully excited about the Windows 7 experience are those who were hoodwinked into Windows Vista, and then, trying to get some relief, put Windows 7 Beta and/or Release Candidates on their machines.
Those people involved in Mr. Ballmer’s great experiment found that the earlier upgrade had given them the ability to run Windows 7 without many problems, so any hardware switching desire was minimal. (And though now it seems as though the experiment was a great move, hindsight tells that it was the only sensible move, as no one not involved in the beta program was going to believe that the smell of pork no longer permeated the product that was Windows).
The only section of the hardware market that could have expected a really large boost, graphics card manufacturers, have been let down miserably by production problems (nVidia and ATi) or engineering problems producing nothing but vapor (Intel). S3, with its small continuing, and upcoming, products, has been the only bright spot in the graphics market, and that is only a small flicker of light and hope.
So the rabbis gave the seal of approval to Windows 7, but that was not enough to overcome the economy and the Microsoft self promotion, where Microsoft wins relatively big, but does nothing to pull the OEM PC makers along because the public can upgrade at roughly the half the cost of any other recent cycle.
With the only section of the computer market that has shown growth being netbooks, Intel is happy, but Microsoft loses because Windows 7 is still a bit stodgy for the Atom powered netbooks.
Many people are thinking about the upcoming Black Friday festivities (only festive if you aren’t on the key punching side of the register). With deals like the HP Celeron laptop for $299 at Walmart, it might seem as though the holiday season will boost things greatly, but some economists are predicting a shallow sales slump during the season. One goes so far as to say that, due to huge discounts on Black Friday, it will be the largest BF on record, followed by a complete flop for the rest of the season, making everyone wonder what has happened.
So Mr. Ballmer will be slightly pleased, but has to wait to do the monkey boy dance until the corporate citizens start to make the jump to Windows 7, and Mr. Dell will have to hope he and the other OEMs can get a huge bounce when alien beings come down during the holidays and remove current PCs, taking them back to the home world for study.
Quote of the day:
The main things which seem to me important on their own account, and not merely as means to other things, are knowledge, art, instinctive happiness, and relations of friendship or affection.
– Bertrand Russell