Microsoft is encouraging business users to upgrade to Windows 7 to prepare for a smoother transition to Windows 8.
Windows XP continues to exist, but Microsoft is finally encouraging businesses to use Windows 7
The last time time I used Windows XP was in the mid 2000s, and it had been out for a while. It’s still going around six years later, but it looks like Microsoft is finally encouraging a switchover to Windows 7.
In fact, Windows 7 is seen as the next step up from Windows XP – a worrying sign for Windows 8 (though not Windows Vista, of course). A whitepaper by the IDC made the judgement; it said the labor costs for running Windows XP were five times the amount of Windows 7. Windows XP holds just below 50 percent of the market share, it was revealed, with Windows 7 taking just below 40 percent.
The paper also said upgrading to Windows 7 will prepare companies for upgrade to Windows 8 in the future, which I think is the best strategy because day one of an operating system is sometimes the most dangerous. It reasoned moving to Windows 8 later because transitioning applications and hardware for the OS will be pain-free.
It may be the case businesses skip Windows 8 for Windows 9, particularly because Metro is basically a new operating system – new apps, new interface and a new marketplace. Windows 9 will probably be more refined, and it may be well be a Metro-only Windows. If that’s the case, then we’ll see software developed for Windows 8 already supporting Metro in Windows 9.
Microsoft is dropping support from XP by 2014, so users should be switching over then. Honestly, they’re way behind the curve and there’s no reason to not upgrade to Windows 7: It’s a better OS that’s better designed. I certainly don’t want to be using a decade-old OS. Microsoft will be hoping people are surprised by Windows 8, especially because it’s placing such a big bet on Metro.
Metro on ARM is key
I think the desktop side of Windows 8 will be supported very well regardless of whether Metro succeeds or not, but it’s not that simple for mobile devices. The desktop side is, well, not the best platform to use (Microsoft did that with Windows Mobile).