Windows 8 is on the path to success. Here's my take on why.
I know a lot of people seem to be saying lately that Windows 8 is a failure because it hasn't shipped a ton to consumers. But I don't agree with that at all. I think that like any major shift in paradigm Windows 8 is going through some growing pains but is ultimately on the right track. There are a number of reasons:
1. It seems to me the most major problem with Windows 8 is the hardware. It's sort of ahead of its time in that OEMs are making a lot of first generation products, they're getting used to touch screens, Ivy Bridge and current gen Atoms aren't powerful enough or conserve enough battery etc, and most are too expensive. As the OEMs get better at this new post iPad world we'll see better adoption. I know personally there's been a distinct lack of laptops with dedicated graphics, high quality detachables, etc. The first generation of Windows 8 devices has mostly been a "lets try all these crazy form factors and see what sticks" sort of deal. The next generation will most likely be along the lines of "ok that was fun now let's make some actual products".
2. In the tech world there's a divide happening. Companies like Acer have been showing displeasure with Microsoft while other's like Samsung have totally lambasted them. Before pretty much everyone was a PC OEM but now companies want to carve more of an identity and some just don't want to deal with MS anymore. Some honestly just like Android and I believe personally others don't want to see MS succeed since it isn't in their best interests (Samsung). It's not all doom and gloom though. Asus is a strong Windows 8 partner despite having Android products. Once they get their house in order I expect to see some very nice devices from them. Lenovo is ahead of the pack and they've consistently done great things. Even Acer who has complained has put out a nice laptop. Once the dust settles we'll see the next generation of PC OEMs.
3. Release time. Maybe Microsoft should have waited for better hardware but I think most know they couldn't wait that long. This past Windows 8 release has got the wheels churning in Redmond and now they're working on "Blue" which is the first major update to the OS. It's better that they release the app store now and get the idea of Windows 8 out there and improve upon that base than wait.
Ultimately we're in a world now that's going through some pretty major shifts. In the next 5 years tablet and smartphone use could drop. Maybe in 10 we'll just have a piece of glass and we'll see images on it projected from something over our eyes. Who knows? But I do know that Microsoft and Windows aren't going anywhere. They'll adapt and improve and press on. Anyone who claims they're days are numbered or are about to lose their seat in the world are grossly incorrect.
Anyway what do you think? Is Microsoft on the right track with Windows 8? Do you think they should reneg on some things like the start button? Or is there something I'm missing and in a few years time they'll be at the bottom of the barrel in consumer tech? What do you think?