As Android and Apple’s iOS continue to fight for total world domination in the Mobile OS space, one name almost always conspicuous by its absence, in my opinion, is Microsoft’s Windows8 . Windows 8 is Microsoft’s attempt to stay relevant in the future. The product received great reviews overall and Microsoft is using its money and power to create an ecosystem around this OS. But a recent report by a research firm called IDS has something that may worry Ballmer and Co. in Seattle.
Is Microsoft going to go the dinosaur way?
The report by this research firm says new smart-connected devices shipped out to consumers and businesses are expected to exceed 1.1 billion units in 2012 and will reach 1.84 billion units by 2016 which is twice the current ship rate of 2011.Establishing the well-known fact that in future, we will all be ‘smart’ users. Raising the question-is the PC going to become obsolete? The report further concludes that Windows on x86-compatible chips i.e. PCs will take a big hit between now and 2016, and Android OS will rise in power in the same time period. While the amount of Windows PC shipments will grow slightly between now and 2016, the PC’s share of all devices shipped will decrease by almost 11 percent.
Microsoft pretty much defined the IT age with Windows. The company is now a behemoth that still depends on the same product that took it to greatness. For a technology company, it has been surprisingly slow to innovate. Unlike its nimble neighbor Amazon, it hasn’t adapted itself quickly to the changing times. Windows 8 may have a lot things going for it but timing isn’t one of them. This OS hit the market when Android and Apple’s iOS have firmly entrenched themselves in the market. And it will be hard for Windows 8 to make up for the lost time.
But a silver lining to this situation, in my opinion, is that PCs aren’t going anywhere. Tablets and phones are devices for content consumption. We need desktops to perform complex tasks. The market for desktops will continue to shrink but honestly, I don’t think there is going to be a post-PC world. Hence, MS may not need to fear extinction but it should be concerned about being irrelevant.