Enterprise sends Windows 8 to the grave before launch

Enterprise sends Windows 8 to the grave before launch

Summary: The controversy surrounding the new platform may prevent early adoption by businesses -- but who cares?


Taking such a step away from traditional Windows operating systems, will the upcoming Windows 8 platform prove too much for businesses?

Just as Microsoft's upcoming Surface RT tablet may not fit any market niche particularly well, some analysts have said that Friday's launch may be ignored for businesses currently operating on older versions of Apple's OS X rival.

Reuters reports that for a number of corporations, Windows 8 does not suit the enterprise market enough to warrant widespread adoption and movement away from Windows 7. Doug Johnson, head of risk management policy at the American Bankers Association, told the publication:

"Windows 8 is, frankly, more of a consumer platform than it is a business platform, so it's not something that makes any sense from a business perspective at this juncture. There is really no additional business functionality that Windows 8 gives you that I see."

The Windows 8 platform is designed to run well on tablets and low-cost computer chips, and includes touch-screen functionality for tablet users. Whether the interface, loss of the traditional start-menu or ad-support is not business-friendly may in fact be a moot point, as software upgrades cost a business money -- and if it's not broken, why fix it?

windows 8 business adoption analysis

Many businesses are still running versions of Windows -- including Windows XP -- where support is being withdrawn, and updates are a costly process. It is the rare company that immediately orders the widespread adoption of the latest shiny piece of software, and Windows 8 is unlikely to be the exception to the rule.

Yes, Windows 8 can be used on both a tablet and PC, and comes in multiple versions. However, the consumer and enterprise lines are blurring, and whether you want to market this as a consumer or enterprise innovation, it is hard to deny that many aspects of the platform are aimed at a young, swipe-happy generation of mobile device users.

See also: Windows 8 is the new XP | Delaying Windows upgrades: Do you feel lucky? | How to skip Windows 8 and continue using Windows 7 | What are the cheapest and easiest upgrade paths to Windows 8? | Windows adoption rates: a history lesson 

Not only this, but in order to protect their investment, businesses will often test an operating system for up to 18 months before deployment. For example, car manufacturer Volkswagen has only just migrated PCs to Windows 7, so its unlikely the firm will be chomping at the bit to migrate to a new system that would take staff retraining to use efficiently.

The car maker's head of IT Martin Eickhoff said he was "excited to evaluate the new tablet features" but an assessment would have to be made after launch about Windows 8's suitability.

We have to consider just how rapid a change this operating system represents -- and whether or not the deployment pattern will last. It may be ignored altogether -- Windows Vista coming to mind -- and the enterprise may outright ignore the new system. An analysis at Gartner, Michael Silver, believes this will be the case, saying that "We believe 90 percent of large organizations will not deploy Windows 8 broadly, and at its peak, we expect about 20 percent of PCs in large organizations will run Windows 8."

Last year, Windows only accounted for 25 percent of Microsoft's sales. Tools and services -- such as Microsoft Office -- are now taking priority, and so the widespread adoption of Windows 8 may not be a top concern in the firm's head office. The platform may prove popular in some business roles, such as travelling sales reps who aren't inclined to use rival tablets including the iPad, but in itself, touch-screen functionality and apps are useful, but not a necessity in the business world.

Microsoft gets paid either way when they strike multi-licensing deals with companies and organisations. No matter which version businesses prefer, even if Windows 8 only proves popular with consumers, it is unlikely to turn users away from the technology giant.

Image credit: CNET

Topics: Windows, Mobile OS, Operating Systems

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  • did you even try the windows8 before writting this??????

    you must be kidding... right..

    windows8 will be the perfect windows for the business... boots fast, secure boot, web office apps, work and play interface....... I can go on...

    surface RT is already have 3week wait for pre pre order...

    all you are doing is speculation, no facts...

    a lot of people in this world are using simple phone do not mean smartphone is not going to sell???

    if you don't like Microsoft, and don't have anything to say, please do not say anything at all...

    regarding people still using windows XP is because of a lot of silly reasons, lazy IT managers, as windows7 can do everything better then xp. and if someone is still using XP not mean MS have to support it...

    another MS hater...

    my 4 year old can use windows 8 and loving it, maybe you are too old for a change...
    • App-store model is attractie for enterprise users

      It's not that uncommon for big users to access it a while at first. Happen all the time to past Windows adoption. Those still on XP will switch faster.
    • Re: did you even try the windows8 before writting this??????

      Weird, isn't it, that anybody criticizing a Microsoft product is automatically assumed not to have used it. And then when they point out that they have used it, and prove it by mentioning actual known problems, the response then is "it's only a beta/preview, wait for the final release before judging".

      Well, we're still waiting for the final release to ship. And Microsoft is showing no signs of even acknowledging the most serious problems. By the time it does ship, it will be too late.
      • Blah blah blah

        • Is that your boss's official answer?

          When Microsoft's paid astroturfers don't like facts, they often attack the messenger. I believe it's called an Ad Hominem Attack.
          Troll Hunter J
      • You don't have to have used it...

        ...to be able to read the internet to pick out a list of things that OTHER people have said is wrong with Windows 8.
        • Same things were being said about XP when it wwas released and...

          .... 2 years later were still being said. At the time of release the dominate Windows OS in the enterprise was Windows 2000. Nobody liked XP's start menu. It was called "cartoonish". It takes no talent to repeat what you read on the 'net written by other "experts" but it does take talent to add a bit of perspective. Problem here is ZDnet hires these chippies that are too young to know what was happening 10 years or more ago and worse believe that it doesn't matter or a hack like SJVN who gives the latest Ubuntu offering a pass even though it's slower than the previous release.
    • It's not like mountain-climbing.

      There are plenty of individuals and companies that will be standing in line for the traditional midnight sales-release of Windows 8. I won't be one of them. And I suspect most other people (and companies) will be sitting at home as well. To us, buying into a new OS is not like mountain-climbing ... something to do just because "it's there." Instead, we assess our uses of an OS and ask ourselves whether a new OS will allow us to do something we "want" to do than a current OS "won't" do. And if that list of things is short or non-existent, we stay put.

      This has little to do with whether we "like Microsoft." And it has even less to do with whether we're "too old for a change." Some people change for the sake of change. Most people don't. It's just the way things are.
      • Agreed

        While I'm likely to go for a Windows 8 tablet, I'm sticking with Windows 7 for the desktop, it works fine for what I need, and I prefer the interface.
        • You do know that Windows 8 is twice to 3 times as fast as some tasks

          Than Windows 7? Right?
          • All this bluster about how fast Win 8 is

            And what are those "some tasks" where Win8 is 2 to 3 times as fast as Win7? I have seen that claimed repeatedly but of course they are really only perceptions or opinions.
            Don't give me the boot-much-faster nonsense. I'm not fooled by the use of hybrid boot; if you strip functions out of booting it takes less time. Big whoop. How many people go into a computer store and ask the sales droid which computer and which OS boots fastest? What proportion of the time do most computer users spend booting their computers (other than applying the daily updates and patches to Win7)? When one of the biggest selling points about Win8 is how fast it boots (at least into tablet mode) you know people are grasping at straws.

            I have a multiboot computer that is reasonably competent (a 2.5 GHz, 8 gig RAM Core2 Quad, although not an i7) and I have WinXP Professional 64, Windows 7 Home Premium and Windows 8, final preview (which I understand is essentially identical to the final official release) installed on it.
            I won't buy the argument that Win8 in tablet/tile/Metro mode (or whatever you call it) is faster than tablet/tile/Metro mode in Win7, because, um, Win7 can't do that (unless there is some cute Easter egg I'm not privy to).
            So the comparison must be made in desktop, or traditional mode. Microsoft's own "Experience Index" can't even come up with an advantage for Win8. I have downloaded a variety of benchmark programs and you get the same result (no real difference in performance). So whatever those "some tasks" that are 2 to 3 times faster in Win8 than Win7 are they must be esoteric and rarely used (other than the booting, and the fact is that the traditional hibernate function is slower during going to sleep than during waking up so the advantage of hybrid boot is pretty lame) or the benchmark programs aren't aware of those tasks and don't evaluate them.
            I'd be willing to bet that if you messed around enough you could find some applications, functions or processes that actually are faster in Win7 than in Win8. That of course would take all the fun out of it, wouldn't it?
          • Windows 8 faster

            I don't know for other PCs or laptops, but I have Windows 8 installed in 3 units at homo since it first became available a year ago. The HP laptop has AMD turion and 2 Gb memory and now runs 32bit version and the change from Vista 10-15 boot to 1.5 min with the same programs installed. The older Foxcon MB Athlon 3700+ 64 bit single core and 3 Gb RAM boot improved from about the same as HP and using XP prof 32 bit to about < 1min with Windows 8 64bit version with same programs from shut off. Finally mine Intel i7 860 four core Gigabyte MB, 8Gb RAM improvement from using XP pro 32bit to Windows 8 64bit was from 1.5 min to 30sec. All units timed from the post screen to workable desktop. In comparison Linux Puppy or Fatdog that are my test programs for basically bad drives or boot problems on other computers the boot up time in mine is 45sec.
            Because the big difference on boot I can't say how much faster programs run but I do know that in the older PC the streaming media now runs perfect and that was not the case before. All the components are the same and still are.
            So as far as I am concerned the Windows 8 is faster noticeably than the mentioned programs and at least mine as soon I type the password it opens in desktop. I only need to go start screen when I for what ever reason want to. Yes there are apps that only work from the start screen but I personally barely use them. Don't need to, I use shortcuts in the desktop.
          • Linux faster

            Hmmmm you boot Puppy Linux in 45 seconds from the CD? Try installing it on the hard drive, that will show you what fast booting is.
    • Probably not

      ... otherwise, why the unecessary reference to OS X. Could be the author is showing her bias.
    • I have Four 7 pcs, 1 Vista pc, 1 dual boot 98-Ubuntu system

      I couldn't support Microsoft more than I already do, however I see too many major companies including the one I'm employed with who are still using desktops and servers based on computers which were upgraded (or downgraded as you see fit) to XP Professional. The proprietary based IT service which writes our java based inventory and sales system is paid to keep inventory flowing in and flowing out not teaching counter help to find a desktop, before cataloging. 8 is not ready for prime time by any stretch.
    • Windows 8 is for kids.

      Thank god desktop Linux is in such a good state otherwise we would all be forced in to using a system designed for kids/teens - Desktop linux is now in a healthy state as long as you ignore Ubuntu/Unity (which is nearly as bad as windows8) - Ubuntu/Unity like windows 8 is really a tablet based system that just doesn't work as a desktop

      Kubuntu (KDE desktrop) is 1000 X more usable than Windows 8 for doing anything constructive, or even just opening a file/web page... (try it and you will se...)

      It sound like MS is trying to clone Ubuntu Unity's ideas - i.e a mobile/desktop OS in one - that no one actually likes or can use to do anything.

      I don't care about lack of MS Office, Libre Office does everything I need in terms of office apps (Libreoffice is pretty damn fast now..)

      You all you mugs that are about to fund this American patent troll more money than you have already been forced to (via tax) - good luck - 'desktop' linux is going no where - even if KDE didn't exist there are many alternatives - cinammon, lxde, xfce, E17 (really insanely lightweight) all better and more usable than Windows 8 (also free)

      Tax payers around the world are forced to fund MS so the 'cancer' will still keep going strong, they will keep suppressing innovation for mankind...

      What I mean is the fact that schools, hospitals, police, etc are all using Windows desktops still when there is absolutely no need (better) free alternatives exist - this is due to the fact they got a monopoly during the 90's when competition didn't really exist and use tactics outlined in the Halloween documents (at the end of the 90's) to keep their position by ensuring that competition cannot viably exist. (according to the EU in an illegal way)

      i.e: rule not by making a better product but by controlling and hijacking existing standards...

      And before anyone says - 'that was ages ago' - look at the recent legal attacks against Android.

      And things like




      Most Microsoft 'customers' didn't choose Microsoft, they had no choice - ask yourself why ?

      And I pity those that haven't broke free yet as their future is Windows8....

      At least if the tax payer was funding a Linux based company any improvements would benefit computing as a science for the entire of mankind - rather than be a cash cow for Microsoft's lawyers in patent trolling.
      Tax should be used to benefit society not a shit American company.
      • Almighty Linux Fan!

        I guess you run your car, cook your food and even have sex through the terminal! Good Luck!
        • Good luck

          Yes, we have good luck with Linux. I like the E17 and Cinnamon desktops, both work on Ubuntu. I never warmed up to the Unity, but it's all about choice (that you don't get with Windows). And I just upgraded to 12.10 with two clicks, and no typing in the terminal.
      • Linux and documents

        I can only wonder what kind of documents you write, because what I have experienced with Linux is quite curious result when somebody with MS-Office opens them.
        To test this out side my own PC I asked friend in Finland who has Upuntu in his laptop for financial reasons to send me a written document as attachment. I just say that opening it with the MS-Word, which is the most used program by business world, that I really wouldn't have my resume come up formatted like that. It was saved and sent by document format and by opening it with both linux and Word the formatting was all over the place. Like I do not know how the original looked although I have an idea. At home I tried open office with puppy linux and did some exel spread sheet work that was originally done with Exel after saving it in xls format and good for me the "scalc format" Exel promtly came up note that the file was corrupted.
        At least I can not rely on these kind of results. How would I know how the file would show somewhere if everything that I have seen so far is quite unreliable from the Linux based documents. My daughter works in office that handles most MS-Office type of documents and her experience is that you do not get converted documents coming out generally right. Maybe the there is a special method to do those documents in Linux machines but at least my friend in Finland didn't even realize that he had a problem. The fact that the text documents can be read doesn't mean that they are professionally suitable for use.
    • That's precisely the problem...

      ...Win8 is for 4 year olds.