For Microsoft, a lot hinges on the success of the new Windows 8 operating system. In financial terms, Windows 8 is their second most important product after the Office package. But it’s not just the money that is at stake: Windows 8 is an attempt to prove that Microsoft is still relevant, still innovative, and can still offer slick products.
This makes the numbers reported by Forrester’s “Forrsights Data Survey” even more alarming should they prove to be true. They give a rather disappointing picture for major corporate customers.
Number of companies wanting to migrate down by half
According to Forrester’s survey of companies in North America, considerably fewer companies are planning to migrate to Windows 8, which was launched a few weeks ago, compared to its predecessor, Windows 7. In 2009, when Windows 7 launched, almost half of all the companies surveyed wanted to migrated to the new operating system. This time, the figure is only 24%.
In addition, fewer companies have definite plans to upgrade: Whereas in 2009 17% were planning to migrate, in 2012 the figure is 9%. Ten percent of companies are even intending to skip this Windows version altogether. A mere 1% gave this answer in 2009.
Experts and analysts are trying hard to figure out whether demand will really turn out to be weaker, and why that might be. Is Windows 8 worse than Windows 7? Was there a greater need to migrate from Vista? Or is it simply to do with the weak economy? One thing is clear though – we’ll only have reliable answers when Microsoft publishes its preliminary results.