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back to article Goldman Sachs: Windows' true market share is just 20%

Windows might still be the dominant desktop computing OS by a large margin, but Microsoft is in danger of becoming a small player in today's global computing market, according to a new report from financial bigwigs Goldman Sachs. The report, which was obtained last week by The Seattle Times, says that while Microsoft operating …

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Anonymous Coward

LOL

"Throw smartphones and tablets into the mix along with traditional laptops and PCs..."

Don't forget washing machines and microwave ovens. They have software too. And cars.

Seriously, unless you're a pimp or a drug dealer, you don't use a smartphone to do the majority of your paid work, and I don't know of anyone who gets paid to watch TV, regardless of how 'smart' it is. So new products get developed, and they don't run Windows. Big deal. That doesn't mean that there are any fewer PCs in offices, and almost all of those run Windows. In that market, nothing has changed.

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@mutatedwombat

You lack imagination and an understanding of how to make technology work for you instead of simply doing whatever the most recent whitepaper you read tells you to do.

I do the majority of my work on Android endpoints. I use an Asus Transformer or a Samsung Galaxy Note II. A huge quantity of that time is spend using them as thin clients to RDP into my Windows XP VM running Office 2003, but this is only because Android lacks a sufficiently good Office package for me to totally jettison that VM.

Browsing, research, even a fair chunk of the server administration I do can be – and is – done directly on my Android devices. I can access Teamviewer, RDP, various terminals, transfer files, compose documents…you name it.

We don't work on TVs you say? Well, my third most frequently used Android device is…my television. I sure do get paid to work on my TV. It's a 47" 1920x1080 screen perfect for doing all sorts of useful work on. In fact, it is generally where I keep browser widows up for research, since the nice large type that appears is easy on the eyes.

Do I have Windows systems? Yes. Do I plan on refreshing them any time in the forseebale future? No. In fact; I am "Libre Office that works with touch, keyboard and mouse on Android" away from being able to walk away from Microsoft for anything except my collection of older Steam games.

For the actual heavy lifting stuff, I find that all the big apps I need have been ported to OSX.

I do "work" on these devices. Systems administration. Writing. Research. Video and image editing. A squillion types of communications. I don't need Microsoft and that – I think – is exactly the point that Goldman Sachs is getting at here. Most of us don't anymore.

Some do. Certainly Autocad isn't going to run on Android anytime soon, and there are a squillion legacy apps still stuck on Win32. Frankly, RDP (especially thanks to things like Nvidia's VGX and Microsoft's RemoteFX) is becoming more than capable of delivering legacy apps to non-Microsoft systems. App-V and ThinApp-style applications exist to also help ease the transition.

For the first time in 30 some odd years Microsoft is actually being forced to compete on merit. They are ill equipped to do so. They have institutionalised mistreatment of their customer base to such an extent that they are corporately incapable of rising to the challenge of getting end users excited about their offerings.

Microsoft – like Oracle, IBM's mainframe geeks, HP's Itanic division and other legacy vendors – doesn't really have very many customers any more. They have hostages. They aren't competing only against their last version anymore, they are competing against "good enough" offerings from others.

Is Libre Office a feature-for-feature replacement for MS Office? No. But for most people, it doesn't have to be. Nor does iWork or anything else trying to play the game.

Browser compatibility is more important than operating system compatibility for the overwhelming majority of users and that given the plethora of options this puts users in a position where they can make choices based on those intangibles like "does the company I'm buying from treat me with respect, listen to my gripes and play ridiculous profit maximisation licensing games that make me feel like I'm dealing with an American cell phone company?"

What nerds and fanboys don't get is that alternatives don't have to exist for every conceivable use case for a migration to begin. Your market share is whittled away every time someone looks at their budget, says "I have $1500 to buy myself some new shiny," and chooses someone who is not you.

A fanboy is bound to pop in and say "Microsoft isn't doomed, it's just that people are updating thier systems on longer cycles than before!" I argue that this means they are, in fact, doomed. People are updating their systems on longer cycles because they don't see a need or reason to update! They do see value in an iPad, a Galaxy Note II or a Kindle.

They are getting something they want – hardware or software that meets their needs – from another vendor. That vendor isn't sitting still, either. Those devices and those vendors are becoming more and more capable every single day.

So what happens when Aunt Tilly's computer finally breaks? When that Windows PC she's been nursing for 3, 6, or 10 years finally gives up the blue smoke or gets that one, final virus? Do you – Microsoft, fanboy, nerd or otherwise – honestly believe that Aunt Tilly is going to rush out the next day to Staples and buy a new Windows PC?

Maybe. Maybe not! Maybe fucking not. Isn't that scary, right there? Aunt Tilly may well look at the broken PC and say "you know what, I never use the damned thing. I don't think I'll replace it."

That is what analysts who understand people - as opposed to those who have attached their nerdy self worth to a corporation or product's success – understand about this whole smartphone/mobile revolution thing.

It is why Smart TVs will, in fact, be "a thing."

Why? Because when Aunt Tilly's PC dies and she wanders in to Best Buy…if the Apple TV is sitting there she may just buy it. That Apple TV has a nice big screen, can do everything she used to do on her old PC – including type with a keyboard and use a mouse – but doesn't take up the space that PC used to…she'll choose it. It's about the same price as a PC, but it's got a bigger screen. Besides which, she's been happy with her Apple iPhone and her Apple iPad…why not get the Apple TV?

This is not a world Microsoft can live in. Microsoft's corporate culture of treating us like substance-addicted prostitutes won't fly in a commoditised world. PCs aren't dead, but Microsoft's dominance is.

In case you missed it, 2012 was the year of Linux on the endpoint. The endpoint just happened to be in our collective pockets, not on our desk.

Apple, Google, Microsoft? Who cares? I – like so many others, it seems – am going to use the device/software/ecosystem that works best for me. I am going to look for return on my investment, and actually care about the total cost of ownership. I am going to assign some value to how I am treated by a company, and whether or not my needs are being met.

The days where I simply do what I am told, eat what's put in front of me and like it are over. I don't have to learn to use whatever interface Microsoft chooses to foist on me. I don't have to use their codecs or live with their DRM or give up my privacy or use only approved apps from only one walled garden store.

I'm the fucking customer and you will make what I want, or I'll take my custom somewhere else.

We can't all do that, yet. Some of us are locked in to one platform or another. But when you get there, when you finally get there and realise that this is the power you have; the choice that you can actually make…it is intoxicating.

Choice. What a novel concept. About fucking time.

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@Trevor

"You lack imagination and an understanding of how to make technology work for you instead of simply doing whatever the most recent whitepaper you read tells you to do."

Nah... When it comes to business use, which is what wombat was aiming at IMO, its not an issue of imagination and/or understanding. Its about time. Time = Money. If people can get $stuff done in 3 hours using Microsoft products (no matter the reasoning behind it) then that'll be preferred over $other_technology.

Then, with more mature businesses, people will also look at continuity. Though not always. A quick solution is preferred; but it also needs to continue working for a good amount of time (usually).

So if $stuff can be done by introducing $other_technology yet only a select few within the company understand $other_technology it can quickly become a serious liability. Because; what'll happen if said select few for whatever reason are suddenly no longer available?

There's much more to this topic than mere understanding and the will to do stuff.

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Re: @Trevor

Sure, there are plenty of good business reasons to keep using MS excusively. No question. But the analysis in the original article wasn't so limited. It was looking at the use of computers in daily life; including emerging markets like Smart TVs.

That means recognising and accepting that consumer use is part of the discussion...and that computers are no longer merely a business tool. When we look beyond business inertia, we start to see that MS is losing in this wider market. That will affect them in the corporate landscape, just as the "personal computer" evaporated mainframes.

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Re: @Trevor

Another item; Microsoft no longer owns all the critical protocols and formats. Ask the man why he bought a Mac instead of a Windows notebook: "I can edit Office documents on my Mac, I can't Facetime with my grandkids on Windows."

The world is larger than the inertia of the fortune 500...and those who recognise that will make...a fortune.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: @mutatedwombat

Interesting points - except for Aunt Tilly, who is not part of the captive office market that I was talking about. Aunt Tilly is unlikely to have licensed expensive domain specific software that works on Windows and will never be ported to anything else. Aunt Tilly is also unlikely to have invested thousands of man hours in developing custom Visual Basic scripts for Excel or Word, the documentation and authors of which have long disappeared. Also, Aunt Tilly isn't faced with the prospect of having to retrain people who are only used to a Windows environment.

So yes, Aunt Tilly may well buy a Mac. Or a tablet. I have an Android phone and tablet myself, and have no interest in the Windows 'equivalents'. I don't think too many large companies will be throwing away their Windows based PCs, however, and that provides a customer base that in my opinion will sustain Microsoft for quite some time.

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Re: @mutatedwombat

If the consumer market leaves Microsoft's cloistered little world, then people at large - people who work in companies, people who administer network and even people who own companies - will start to see and understand a world without Microsoft.

They will see that it is possible, even enjoyable to move away from the Beast of Redmond. Microsoft is used everywhere only because Microsoft is used everywhere. IT is not (for most people) because they adore the company or the product.

This is my point. I'm pretty sure it's Goldman Sachs' point as well. The spread of "not Microsoft" in the consumer sphere will eventually erode Microsoft's dominance in the corporate sphere. In fact, I already see it happening, despite the ardent protestations of the fanboys.

Microsoft is losing the SMB market and is beginning to lose the SME market. This will edge up the stack until even the Fortune 500 are starting to operate heterogeneous environments.

Perhaps like the massive uptake of non-Microsoft environments at Intel. Or the 30,000 deployed Macbooks at IBM. Those could be examples. It depends on how strongly you feel the need to believe that Microsoft is eternal. But what do I know, it's not like investigating such things is my job or anything...

As to "sustain Microsoft for some time," youa re 100% correct.

RIM still sells handsets. Novell still authenticates users. IBM still sells mainframes and HP still ships Itanics. Even Sco still licences their variant of Unix. Microsoft will be around for a long time yet.

But that doesn't mean it will be anywhere near as important in 5 years as it is today, or that in 10 years it will be aught but a shadow of it's former glory.

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Re: FaceTime

"The man" wouldn't have this problem if people used (existing!) open standard protocols for video chat. But everybody uses FaceTime, Skype, and other proprietary solutions because the open software is too fiddly, and nobody except nerds uses it anyway. Sort of like the bad old days with Office documents on the Mac...

Meet the new boss, same as the old boss... (Where's the RMS icon?)

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Re: @Trevor

Most businesses I've been in use iPads for tablets and that does include larger companies. I can't think of anyone that doesn't use blackberry or iphones for company smart phones but they'd go android before MS. Businesses might be happy to be locked into MS on the desktop but rarely do they use MS for phones and tablets. The desktop market is shrinking too so whatever some businesses decide to do is kind of irrelevant.

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Re: @Trevor

Trevor, that was the worst attempt at a counter argument that I have seen from you for a long time.

Almost everything you wrote was purely anecdotale. Trevor you are falling into a trap, just because you work for yourself as an IT Consultant does not mean that you have any major insight whatsover into the Business World and certainly not the Corporate Business World, it is really beginning to show.

I understand that you have your personal methods of working, you have your own quirks that help you get through the day BUT you do not, and are not, representive of the world at large. Please understand this point, it is vital.

Your articles are becoming more and more about Trevor and less about the common subject , IT.. There is a severe lack of objectivity.

If I were to sum up your long winded post at the beginning of this article I would use the following two words. "Egomaniacal diatribe". That is not meant as an insult, it is merely a personal observation.

Do you actually preach this kind Methodology to your clients ?

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Re: @Trevor

> If people can get $stuff done in 3 hours using Microsoft products

I think one of the points you missed is that there are very few tasks that using MS products actually saves you time. Those that are or can only be done on MS software can be done via a VM.

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Holmes

Re: @mutatedwombat

What Android telly/set top box is it?

Just interested.

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Re: @Trevor

If you only look at the back office of a typical business you may see a room full of 'traditional' WinTel desk set-ups. However for the size of the business that room is smaller than it was in 2000, The Sales staff do almost all their work on tablets and smartphones, the directors bring their own stuff and the factory floor have connected devices with built in monitors. The Main business systems are web connectable and this has allowed other OS's to creep in and eat Microsoft's lunch.

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Re: @Vic

Which means that they are still being done my MS, the VM is simply an intermediary layer.

That VM requires a licence, a CAL and the usual other MS niceties.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: LOL

And digital watches...and handheld games consoles..

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Happy

http://www.marriedbbwslooking.com

"It's a 47" 1920x1080 screen perfect for doing all sorts of useful work on. In fact, it is generally where I keep browser widows up for research, since the nice large type that appears is easy on the eyes."

That typo gave me a chuckle, it brings to mind Trevor clicking dating profiles with headlines like "hubby always on internet - curvy girl needs attention".

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Re: @Khaptain

The key point is once you have licensed a VM (which for XP is fine though Win7 I think muddied those waters) is you don't have to worry about hardware changes, drivers, etc. Further more, if it is running in more-or-less isolation for specific tasks you have far, far less to worry about in terms of security. To the point where I don't care about my XP VM going out of support in a year or so time.

The manage-my-whole-network by Microsoft is very attractive for corporate users, and so far Apple & Linux are not nearly as organised, etc, but most people don't want Windows, they want stuff that works and gives them less trouble.

And MS don't really get that - they foist Metro [insert latest name here] and the office ribbon, etc, on us without the obvious and easy to implement option of just keeping the old way and that means re-training and so on. Change is annoying, and it is gradually getting to the point where going from MS to MS latest is as much trouble for users as going to an alternative.

OK, Ubuntu et al are not doing themselves much favours either...

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Re: @mutatedwombat

Ooooooooooooooooooo NICE rant.....

I do "work" on these devices. Systems administration. Writing. Research. Video and image editing. A squillion types of communications. +++++++ I don't need Microsoft and that – I think – is exactly the point that Goldman Sachs is getting at here. Most of us don't anymore.+++++++++

For the first time in 30 some odd years Microsoft is actually being forced to compete on merit. They are ill equipped to do so. They have institutionalised mistreatment of their customer base to such an extent that they are corporately incapable of rising to the challenge of getting end users excited about their offerings.

Ooooo a splendid rant.

The days where I simply do what I am told, eat what's put in front of me and like it are over. I don't have to learn to use whatever interface Microsoft chooses to foist on me. I don't have to use their codecs or live with their DRM or give up my privacy or use only approved apps from only one walled garden store.

I'm the fucking customer and you will make what I want, or I'll take my custom somewhere else.

We can't all do that, yet. Some of us are locked in to one platform or another. But when you get there, when you finally get there and realise that this is the power you have; the choice that you can actually make…it is intoxicating.

Choice. What a novel concept. About fucking time.

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Re: "I don't have to ... give up my privacy"

Android? Er, you kinda sorta do. Unless you haven't infected the device with a Google identifier. I've gone this route on a phone with a custom ROM but it's bloody hard work staying free of the snooping when F-Droid has so few apps.

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Re: @mutatedwombat

The spread of "not Microsoft" in the consumer sphere will eventually erode Microsoft's dominance in the corporate sphere.

Exactly the opposite of what happened 15, 20 years ago: people got PC's with Windows (and before that, DOS for some) on their desk at work, and for compatibility and familiarity reasons chose that for their home system; for some early adopters it may well have worked the other way and as the "computer-knowledgeable one" got to influence the setup of their office environment.

What happened then is happening again now, and this time Microsoft is not the one offering the new options.

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Re: @Trevor

I work for a Fortune 50 company, and I think Trevor is more in tune with the Corporate world than you. Surprised?

I use a corporate-issued iPad, a Linux workstation, and a Win 7 PC. The Win 7 PC gets the least use of the 3, since the iPad with Good Enterprise handles my modest Outlook needs and Office reads as I roam around the multi-site campus, while my Win 7 laptop just kinda sits there, too heavy and klunky for the harried pace of a modern corporation. And all of our internal apps and processes (which were developed in Java after all) are now officially supported on desktop Linux where my daily life is easily automated (though they work on Windows, too, of course).

And no viruses. Hmmm...

Just saying. Vista opened the door (we largely skipped it and looked elsewhere to keep our productivity train moving), and we just don't need to close it now. We're too freaking productive!

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Re: LOL

Couldn't agree more.

If we're looking at "any kind of computing device" this is nothing new. I'm sure that the media want to pretend it's something new, as part of some Windows decline, but we've had mobile phones being mainstream for ten years (Symbian was dominant until 2011 - and why stop at "smartphones" when "feature" phones are also mobile computers, just with a different marketing name?), and before that, we also had games consoles. It's also long been obvious that phones will sell more than PCs (phones are intrinsically something one person has, where as many people still share computers; and people upgrade phones more often).

I'm sure people could make the same claim about the popularity of ARM versus Intel - but again, it's nothing new! I remember in the 1990s reading an article pointing out that actually it was ARM that was very popular, on par with Intel, because of all their use in embedded and mobile hardware.

It's also worth noting that this kind of argument makes every platform look smaller. So Windows is only 20% - but OS X and GNU Linux are also a lot smaller. And Android is no longer at 75% in mobile, it's a lot smaller. Let's throw in all those feature phones too, as I say, and watch the share for Android and Windows go even smaller... (Nokia's S40 still probably sells more than Android, for example.)

That's not to say that it isn't interesting to look at operating system share as a whole, on all kinds of devices - but it's nothing surprising to see a different picture, nor is it anything new.

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And "true" market share of ipods is smaller, too

"Do I have Windows systems? Yes. Do I plan on refreshing them any time in the forseebale future? No. In fact; I am "Libre Office that works with touch, keyboard and mouse on Android" away from being able to walk away from Microsoft for anything except my collection of older Steam games.

For the actual heavy lifting stuff, I find that all the big apps I need have been ported to OSX."

It's great that you're smug about being free of Windows and supporting Free software - but then we find you're an Apple user! I never understand that logic.

Plus it sounds like you're in agreement with the OP - yes, why not include TVs, along with microwaves and washing machines - that Windows has smaller share when you include the market you're looking at is hardly suprising, and nothing new.

Apple's market share of mp3 players is a lot smaller, if we included all devices that can play mp3s! Or especially, all devices that play music. Why not include all the sales of phones, laptops, tablets, stereo systems, and then see the "True" market share of ipods!

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Re: @Trevor

And to think people here still criticise MS for lock-in...

You can webcam on Windows btw. And since most people use Windows, most people are better off web-camming with something that runs on multiple platforms, rather than just a minority platform like Apple. I guess you asked an Apple fan - for most people, that really doesn't make sense.

"Facetime" is just Apple's trademark for something that everyone else did years earlier (flagship feature on an iphone 4? This was standard in 2005 on a feature phone).

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Re: @mutatedwombat

"They will see that it is possible, even enjoyable to move away from the Beast of Redmond. Microsoft ... Or the 30,000 deployed Macbooks at IBM."

Seriously - why are people here so eager to praise and what the success of Apple over MS, a company that's trying to block the most successful open source operating system, with software and design patents?

Not to mention that that would leave us with a company controlling the hardware and OS, rather than just the OS.

I'd love to see more open source success, and more choice in operating systems. But your vision is of a world with less choice.

And I could say the same of Apple - just because they still sell "Macbooks" (why not call them laptops or PCs, like for any other company?) doesn't mean it's important.

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Re: @Trevor

I love how the consensus here seems to be either that Windows 8 is awful for being more touch friendly because people want keyboards; and also that keyboard/mouse is dead, everyone should throw away computers and use ipads...

Which is it?

(As for desktop market, most PCs are mobile in the form of laptops, not desktops.)

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Re: @Trevor

I don't preach to my clients. I ask them what they want and I make it happen. When they ask me what they shojld do, I look at thier unique situation - from fnds to existing tech to requirements to the local staffing situation - and tailor a response to their individual needs.

Why? Do you merely preach the last whitepaper you read? Or is it that you only preach the solutions for which you paid an assload for a cert? Or who took you out for dinner?

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Re: @dan55

Random Samsung. Can't remember tbe model. Fiund instructions to root it online on day, got a terminal, realised is was a Samsung Galaxy S with a television attached. Changed the bootloader and installed cyanogen. :)

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Re: "I don't have to ... give up my privacy"

"Hard work?" I'll root and unlock any Samsung or HTC Android for you in 10 minutes. I'll load the custom ROM of your choice in 5.

This isn't 2009 anymore.

And yes, all my phones are rooted. No, Google doesn't track me.

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@mark

I'm not an Apple user. I'm a journalist and sysadmin. I use the best suited device for the task. Windows, Apple, Android, Linux, BSD...what-have-you.

I have no corporate loyalty excpt to ninite.com ;) (Those guys save me a lot of work. They get my one bit of fanboy. Everyone gets one exception.)

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Re: @Trevor

I am sitting at work with three screens (1280 * 3 Wide ) * 1024 High of applications, some of which, the following , of which have no viable Unix/Apple equivalants (Avaya ASA, Business Objects, Visio). I have several VMs open which are usually interfaces to the servers.

These are my standard tools + MS Office Suite, screen real estate still feels limited and users are always crying out for more.

And yet you guys want to say that you can manage to get your work done on Tablets and Non MS systems. What kind of work do you do ? What kind of "work" does anyone do from a tablet ?

It feels as though there a lot of Porkies being thrown about this forum...

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Re: @mutatedwombat

"'m the fucking customer and you will make what I want, or I'll take my custom somewhere else."

Example: Many companies developing their software for Linux because you can not virtualize MacOS in VMWare, and the customers want to VMWare everything.

Linux in the other hand...

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Re: @Trevor @ShelLuser

Because; what'll happen if said select few for whatever reason are suddenly no longer available?

Hmm you hire more of them? You train some of your stuff? You pay attention to what your business runs on so this doesn't happen?

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Re: @Trevor

I've detailed that pretty explicitly already in my comments here. I have also talked about tools I use in my articles. Lots of command line stuff - where I spend most of my non-Office time - and lots of browser-based tools. Lots of browser-based research. Communications...none of this needs Windows.

Even Spiceworks has a smartphone app.

I also recall explicitly stating that some folks would still be tied to legacy apps and forced to use Windows. Great reading comprehension. A+++++++. Would troll again.

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Re: @mutatedwombat

expensive domain specific software that works on Windows and will never be ported to anything else.

Wine, VMWare, Virtualbox... etc.

Many business are doing it already.

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Re: @Trevor @ShelLuser

Bus factor is always a consideration.. :/

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Re: "I don't have to ... give up my privacy"

Calm down Trevor. The hard work is not in rooting the phone or installing the custom ROM. It is in having to manage without the apps available only from the Google Play store. Because I have decided not to add a Google account to the phone, most of these are unavailable to me. Many legitimate suppliers only make their software available this way. You say Google doesn't track you and perhaps this is true. But how can you be sure? Furthermore, if you install apps via Google Play, Google knows what apps you have installed and is able to make some (though possibly very crude) inferences about you. This is more information than I believe they should have about me - hence my choice to adopt this modus operandi. Everyone else is free to act differently but as I said originally about not having to give up privacy, on Android you kinda sorta do....unless you act to severely limit the capabilities of the device.

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Re: @mutatedwombat

easily the best response I've read for ages!! So funny... "hostages" .. "crack ridden ".. lol

sums it up so well.

I cant believe that people cant see what is happening out there. Its like stockholm syndrome...

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Re: Exactly the opposite of what happened 15, 20 years ago:

Actually, that wasn't what happened 25 years ago when PCs started moving into offices.

Before the IBM PC with MS DOS there was a largely hetero environment of hardware and software. Granted in the home tinkerer market CPM was the big player, but you could find damn near anything. And what those home tinkerers found was that they could hack together stuff they couldn't get out of the mainframe boys so they tried to bring their home systems into the office. But when they did so, the Office Guardians of the Corporate Culture said no (for reasons that are well outlined in a recent El Reg article and which have been biting us on the ass in the non-mainframe world for quite a while now). And IBM looked out and saw they were not getting a piece of that pie. So they said 'Let us enter this market and reap while the reaping is good, but note that it cannot be sustained, so don't waste a lot of R&D money on it.' And the minions went forth and spent no R&D money on it and built the first IBM PC. And when the home tinkerers saw it, it was too expensive to buy for home use. But it was an IBM, and they knew that the Office Guardians would say 'It is an IBM, it is good.' And thus they wer able to get their home program brought into the office and accomplish certain things more quickly, but without the coordination truly large organizations require. And as the IBM PC was adopted in some offices other offices saw that they were at a certain type of disadvantage so they adopted them too. And thus the IBM PC came to dominate the Business World. But then Compaq had a vision. In this vision they saw that because there was no R&D money spent on the IBM PC and there was no sales support money either, there were no patents protecting the hardware and the specs had openly been publishes. So they set about making compatible hardware based on the specs, but at a cheaper price. And they needed the same OS, so they went to Microsoft who granted unto them the same license that had been sold to IBM. From that line eventually came the affordable, and then the cheap home computer. And it spread like wildfire across the civilized world until MS was the monoculture of personal computing.

The only reason to buy Microsoft is because everyone else has been buying Microsoft. This isn't new and has been true for the last 15 years. It is the same reason MS has had problems moving away from their DOS base. (Hell, we have a critical app here that still depends on an 8-bit DOS app that the programmers can't find a replacement for.) The advent of pure consumer consumption devices doesn't change that. Goldman Sachs hasn't discovered anything, and they are likely wrong about their assertions.

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Re: "I don't have to ... give up my privacy"

Um...firewalls, hosts file, packet analysis and so forth.

Also; there are alternate markets. Kindle. Or Appbrain.

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Re: "I don't have to ... give up my privacy"

Hmmmm. Worth a look I suppose so thanks for the tip. Hopefully neither of those require any sort of ID that can be tied to the device. Otherwise it's just kept the sharp object digging into my soft bits but moved it to another pocket.

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Re: @Khaptain 15:03

The core of my work is done in character cell terminals. A good chunk of the remainder is by browser, although to get access to those systems I need to open a remote desktop to some Windows crate on the other side of a firewall. Most of those browser-accessed systems tell you to use $DEPRECATED_VERSION of IE, but Firefox (sometimes with its browser identification set to $DEPRECATED_VERSION of IE) works just as well.

Actual Windows stuff that I currently run on my desktop at work is a problem tracking tool, Outlook, and Office, but there's a WTS I can use for that (a lot of Office stuff is closely tied to Sharepoint, so I suspect that LibreOffice is not quite a viable alternative).

There's no need for me to have Windows on my desktop, and if the stupid thing karks once more it won't be on my desktop anymore.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: @Trevor

and those who recognise that will make...a fortune.

Except you.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: @Trevor

Hey Trev,

>Do you merely preach the last whitepaper you read?

You like saying that don't you.

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Silver badge

Re: Exactly the opposite of what happened 15, 20 years ago:

Sorry, but the CP/M crowd wasn't that big, and was mostly limited to hobbyists and the odd user who had the forward-looking nous to realise that these things were (or at least could be) a spiffy typewriter, an even spiffier calculator and a filing cabinet rolled into one. I know of exactly one non-hobbyist back then (around 1980) who had a computer (a Bondwell portable IIRC) for writing documents and doing spreadsheets. All the other computers around were Atoms, ZX81's and whatever one could find in kit form, with the occasional Apple ][, then Speccy's, BBC's and just about everything else that came along. Usually those systems lived in a nest of flatcables between DIY peripherals.

When the PC hit the market and started being deployed around offices a lot of companies offered projects where you could buy a PC to use at home, at a reduced price and tax-deductable. And Microsoft jumped on that bandwagon with both feet, allowing you to use WIndows and Office at home if your employer had a business license. IMO the latter is what strongly contributed to the self-sustaining inertia of the Windows environment.

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Re: @Trevor

"And yet you guys want to say that you can manage to get your work done on Tablets and Non MS systems."

What's so suprising about that. Scientist, academics, engineers, designers - lots of them work on non-MS systems. You might not recognize the names of the programs but plenty of them are rather pricy. Before I retired I'd been using Linux plus a host of commercial scientific software for ~6 years, much of that had been ported from SGs and there were several hundred of us in the company so equipped.

A few comments recently have been along the lines "who needs more computing power - machines are fast enough" - well they may be to edit a document or fill-in a form but there are PLENTY of people who have requirements for as much as they can get. My twin Xeon workstation used to run all the time - many of the day-day requirements needed a run of several days and nights and I had a stack of jobs waiting to run whenever the machine was idle. For the really serious stuff there were several 1-2 K node Linux farms.

What wimpy kind of work do you do ?

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Re: chemist

A number cruncher...,

You have just excluded yourself from larger subset known as the majority.. your vote doesnt count. Sorry.

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Silver badge

Re: chemist

A perfectly valid use for a computer - probably the original.

In any case It wasn't all exotic calculations, there was the real-time use of 3D graphics to study protein structures, analysis with spreadsheets ( no not Excel - that could only handle 16K rows at the time - we had to handle millions) and even writing reports & papers.

In any case dismissing thousands of people using non-MS solutions just because it doesn't fit your world view or experience only shows how little experience of the world you have. There are lots of other uses out there - CGI, stock trading, machine control ( all the NMR and MS spectroscopy machines where I worked DIDN'T use MS software.

The majority, by the way, probably only want a browser. If you mean people who work in offices that might be a different matter.

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