With the exception of the Xbox, Microsoft has been on a string of high-profile failures like Zune, Windows Phone, and Surface tablets. But its latest cock-up, the much-reviled Windows 8 operating system may have been the final straw for lots of Windows-based PC users, at least according to those who make the computers.
ZDnet’s Adrian Kingsley-Hughes writes today it’s been so bad that an upcoming Windows 8 update might actually be a U-turn to the interface that Windows users are accustomed to.
He also says that original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) have been hurt by the drastic switch to Windows 8.
Some manufacturers like Samsung and Lenovo have taken actions — such as adding a Start button replacement — that openly address complaints from consumers about Windows 8. While others, like the CEO of Asus, have been more open about their displeasure, publicly stating that “demand for Windows 8 is not that good right now.”
But there are those with even harsher views of Windows 8. Kingsley-Hughes writes that “Privately, one OEM source told me that Microsoft is ‘destroying’ the PC industry, while another claimed that Windows 8 has ‘handed over millions of customers to Apple.'”
This is a delicate time for Microsoft in the consumer world, as more people do their e-mailing and web-browsing from smartphones, tablets, or other connected devices that don’t use a Windows OS. Meanhile, both Google and Apple continue to dominate the mobile OS market — in addition to the hardware sold by both companies.
“Windows 8 has done little to boost sales,” writes Kingsley-Hughes, “so OEMs will be pinning their hopes on the next big thing to come out of Redmond.”