Thinking


The view from here

Will Windows 8 Challenge Apple?

By BKV in Media Strategy on September 29th, 2011

 

A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away...

the powerhouse company that is Microsoft introduced an operating system and took the software industry by storm.

Now, let’s fast forward to today… while ubiquitous, Microsoft is not synonymous with the fastest growing sectors of computing, mobile and tablet. Nor has it been able to appropriately market to those consumers. Has Microsoft simply become a sleeping giant?  Is Microsoft a company, content with their current position – teetering on the lingering threat of conquest from the big, bad kid in town?  Apple, playing the role of the fifth grade bully, rose through the ranks via the introduction of user-friendly, astoundingly innovative products, and has since taken over the playground.  The iPod, iPhone and iPad have been revolutionary and have found unprecedented success in the market from their innovation, quality and the backing of a powerful marketing force.  In fact, these products have created their own market spaces entirely.
 
The recent unveiling of Microsoft’s new operating system – Windows 8 – put a sparkle in the eyes of many Microsoft supporters.  Could this new operating system, designed to work on both PCs and tablets, challenge the omnipotent presence of Apple’s iPad?  With failure after failure, companies attempting to create an alternative to the iPad consistently fall to the wayside.  Is Windows 8 finally the answer? Will the sleeping giant awake?  Microsoft is in need of something new to level the personal infotainment playing field with Apple. The native ability of Windows 8 to work on both PCs and tablets, significant performance improvements, touch screen interface capabilities and the launch of a Windows APP store could help position Microsoft for a comeback. But will it?

 

The future holds challenges for both companies.  With Steve Jobs no longer the head honcho at Apple, can the company continue the tradition of introducing creative, groundbreaking products?  And is Windows 8 just another Windows, or is it really something new, and much better?  The next weeks and months will tell. These are interesting times in technology warfare, my friend.  Dangerous times. 

                                                              

Microsoft unveiled Windows 8 a couple weeks ago and the buzz has been enormous.  A Windows 8 Developer Preview is currently available for download.  Now, I want to know everyone’s bets – Microsoft or Apple?  Who is winning the arms race?  Or is it too early to tell?