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back to article Microsoft blasts PC makers: It's YOUR fault Windows 8 crash landed

Microsoft blames PC makers for underwhelming Windows 8 sales over Christmas, The Register has learned. The software giant accused manufacturers of not building enough attractive Win 8-powered touchscreen tablets. But the computer makers are fighting back: they claimed that if they’d followed Microsoft’s hardware requirements and …

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Re: Windows 8 FAIL

@Eadon: Ummm let me see Microsoft makes prototypes of tablets back in 2000 which the OEMs use. It puts out a tablet-enabled version of Windows XP in 2002 while Apple and Dell are triumphantly telling the world that no one wants tablets.

MSN Search is older than Google, and was rebranded as Bing. A fair chunk of Google's top brass are ex-Microsofties.

If you want to make these accusations please lay out the design trail between Microsoft, Apple and the OEMs. I'm sure the courts would be interested in your *cough* theories.

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Re: Windows 8 FAIL

@Eadon " Furthermore, MS are competing on an unlevel playing field, MS don't have to pay licence fees for their OS. And they can use API's for their own kit that they may make unavailable to OEMs. They can tweak Windows to give their own kit an unfair advantage, in terms of speed, features, training their own developers, etc."

I guess they're competing with Apple's similarly closed OS and API arrangements.

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Facepalm

Re: Windows 8 FAIL

they need to make two changes 1 strip TIFKAM from win8 for laptops and desktops 2 include it for touchscreen based systems. how hard would that be?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Windows 8 FAIL

@Edon - Bing toolbar doesn't send Google search results back to MS, it sends the URLs you have visited to MS, like it tells you it does.

In other news one of the things that the EU want Google to stop doing in order to not investigate them under anti-competition laws is, you guessed it: Stop reporting other search engines' results as their own.

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Re: Windows 8 FAIL

you MUST be Steve Ballmer

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Pint

Re: Windows 8 FAIL

Eadon I think you need a holiday mate. I can just imagine the steam blowing out you ears every time you see the word Microsoft. You will give yourself a heart attack. I think Windows 8 is crap too but it ain't life and death. Take few deep breaths and chill out......

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Re: Windows 8 FAIL

"a fair portion of the existing market for office migrated to libreoffice or openoffice"

Not the paying market.

Give them time.

A thing Microsoft doesn't (or won't) understand about many corporate customers is their desire for stability, upward conpatibility, and a quiet unexciting life on the IT front.

These customers are likely still be running Office 2007 (some, 2003), often on XP. Upgrading may well mean paying to have all secretarial and non-technical staff sent on an Office 2010 course, on top of the hardware, licensing and IT staff costs.

And if that's going to happen every 3-4 years (2003 - 2007 - 2010 - ??) maybe 2003 or 2007 - Openoffice starts to look attractive?

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Re: Windows 8 FAIL

Hey look, it's the new "Steve Barkto!" Still getting your cheques to be a Munchkin, right? Maybe you'll get a nice shiny Kinect (complete with Dance Dance Han Solo) as a reward for being a "MVP."

That's the fun thing about Microsoft astroturfers. You can spot 'em a mile away these days and no one is fooled by their bullshit anymore.

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Re: Windows 8 FAIL

"Win7 which was itself rather good"

rather good? for windows OS maybe, but not for OS's in general. you saying so shows you're just another brainwashed MS slave.

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Linux

Re: Windows 8 FAIL

"The OS is fine" is not really a good argument.

You can use that same type of argument with VMS, Solaris, or Linux but it's not exactly going to get you anywhere.

The "shell" is what users are going to interact with. If that sucks or doesn't adequately address their expertise with the last 10 versions of the product, then you are going to have trouble. No amount of weak excuses are going to change that.

Microsoft finally finds itself in a position where it can no longer dictate. Users now realize that they have other options and that they aren't trapped into being "DOS compatible".

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Re: Windows 8 FAIL

"This is not going to end well (for Microsoft)." - Music to my ears......

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Linux

Re: Windows 8 FAIL

Something like msoffice depends on the perception that everyone needs it. Once people realize that they don't need a particular iteration of Word Perfect level overkill for their personal documents, much of the reason for people to use the perceived monopoly evaporates.

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Re: Windows 8 FAIL

"I can't imagine any corporation taking the hit on productivity by taking on this mess."

Bingo. I will not disrupt our entire workflow with this unfinished piece of junk, SMB3.0, the only meaningful plus, does not worth it, it isn't *that* much better at all.

Buhbye, Ballmer - welcome, you non-beancounter successor, now get busy putting back our Start Menu or else...

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Re: Windows 8 FAIL

>Well the problem with Windows (and OSX too) is that the user interface is an integral part of the OS. Don't like it? You're out of luck, gotta live with it anyway.

It seems fairly straight forward to install a 3rd party Start Menu replacement.

> Then why has the market rejected Windows 8 on both mobile and desktop? Are you correct and the market somehow wrong?

Don't throw stones if you live a glass house, Eadon. There could be plenty of reasons for people not buying Win8 (waiting to see how the hardware plays out / comes down in cost being just one of them) just as there valid reason that not everyone uses Linux on their desktop- and that's free of charge.

By the argument you've just given ("the market knows best") then Linux on desktops must be absolutely awful. Since it isn't, then your argument must be faulty.

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Boffin

Re: Windows 8 FAIL @Eadon

Sir, may i refill your glass for you?! This Kool-aid sure goes fast around these parts....

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Re: Windows 8 FAIL

> but now your [sic] complaining that it's competing with the OEMs.

Surface _is_ competing with the OEMs, _and_ it costs too much. OEMs would find it difficult to make equivalent devices at those prices or cheaper. Apple can make iPads at those prices because it has built up an effective supply chain and distribution channel and it has the economies of scale. Android tablets can be inexpensive because the specs can be fitted around what is available.

For WinRT and Win8 tablets MS has laid down specs that require specific suppliers and even specific parts. The OEMs can not even choose which ARM suppliers to use, MS dictates that. Also each OEM has to have its own design so the manufacturing cannot get reasonable volumes to reduce costs.

In addition they have to send a fairly heavy licence fee to MS which is around 20% of the cost. By the time wholesale and retail margins are added anything the OEMs would produce would be as much or more than Surface.

Plus MS have cut the OEMs and retailers out of the software reselling market for W8 apps and taken all that revenue for themselves.

> Try to think your arguments through before using them.

Try to grow a clue, Surface (and other WinRT and Win8 tablets) are too expensive to compete in the iPad and Android markets, or even against laptops, _AND_ MS is trying to take OEMs' and retailers' revenue both with hardware and by locking in software sales to itself.

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Re: Windows 8 FAIL

It is life and death to me... Microsoft is RUINING the computing industry. This is the worst thing they have ever tried to do and I have nothing but hatred for the greedy cunts.

Think beyond the queer user interface, there is something far more ominous in intent. The Microsoft Store. All "Windows 8" (Metro) apps have to go through them, and developers have to pay them homage.

Microsoft is trying to turn computers into dumbed down, locked down devices that they control. They are trying to force a change in the industry, and seize control at this crossroads. I'm glad that vendors aren't playing into their hands.

I've always hated Microsoft, but now it is a darker, and more seething hatred. Anything I can do to cost Microsoft money is my pleasure. (and I do, wherever my work gives me the opportunity)

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Happy

Re: Windows 8 FAIL

Perfectly and lucidly put...

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Re: Windows 8 FAIL

> MSN Search is older than Google, and was rebranded as Bing.

"""Page's web crawler began exploring the web in March 1996, ..."

"""MSN Search first launched in the third quarter of 1998 and used search results from Inktomi. ... a short time in 1999 when results from AltaVista were used ... Image search was powered by a third party, Picsearch. ..."""

So while Google, and others such as Inktomi and AltaVista, developed search engines and invented internet searching, MS came along later and merely provided an MS branded front end to others' work.

That is the usual MS 'innovation'.

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Re: Windows 8 FAIL

> In other news one of the things that the EU want Google to stop doing in order to not investigate them under anti-competition laws is, you guessed it: Stop reporting other search engines' results as their own.

Perhaps you are unaware that the complaint to the EU was made by Microsoft and it was them who made the accusations, including the spurious and unsupported one that Google was blocking MS.

"""After a 20 month investigation, the FTC -- whose boss made it clear he absolutely wanted to bring down Google if he could -- couldn't find any evidence that Google's search results were somehow anticompetitive. All of the evidence pointed to the same basic thing: what Google did was for the benefit of its users. While some competitors were upset about it, antitrust should not be about propping up competitors who can't compete, especially if consumers are not being harmed. Besides, if you actually look at the "competitors" who complained the loudest, many of them are doing quite well these days. """

https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20130111/07473421641/do-we-really-want-eu-bureaucrats-deciding-what-google-search-results-should-look-like.shtml

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Re: Windows 8 FAIL

> It seems fairly straight forward to install a 3rd party Start Menu replacement.

You can _add_ to the UI but you can't 'replace' it. TIFKAM is still there it just doesn't show up as often.

You can add KDE to Windows too, but this doesn't replace the UI, you are stuck with it.

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Re: Windows 8 FAIL

"and some OEMs will be adapting Android for desktop too"

Which is completely ridiculous!

There's a vast array of fantastic free REAL linux OS's around which are MUCH better suited to "the desktop".

The only reason why it may succeed is because o/t games. Android is getting its fair share of games. If these become available on desktop Android (preferably without any hassle) coupled with the fact that you can "sideload" a lot of stuff, then that will push Android forward.

Like it were the games that pushed the Amiga forward in the past, later on games pushed the desktop PC (anyone remember the voodoo rage...) and now these push both the iProducts and Android.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Windows 8 FAIL

"All "Windows 8" (Metro) apps have to go through them, and developers have to pay them homage."

Apple is doing the same with iTunes and Apple software. Why not piss on that tree?

Luckily most o/t time Microsoft's Store doesn't even work. I have 2 clients with Win 8. Tried the Store at one client and all it kept giving was an error message. We had input even credit-details et all to no avail. We just couldn't get something to install (paid or free). It even baffles me.

So yeah, it is a fiasco.

Maybe it's good that these corps get a bit knackered up. They could do with a small lesson in humility.

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@Nigel 11

Indeed, the organisation I work in has not yet completed migrating from XP to Windows 7, nor have we quite finished our migration from Office 2003 to 2010. I cannot imagine we will be migrating to Windows 8 at all, though by the time Windows 9 is out we MIGHT be ready to start planning our next migration.

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@AC

"Apple is doing the same with iTunes and Apple software. Why not piss on that tree?"

Because Apple only have a tiny fraction of the desktop market. Nobody really cares what they do. If Microsoft are allowed to get away with locking down the desktop market like that, it bodes ill for the continuation of the PC as a general-purpose computing device. Desktop PCs will gradually become like the locked-down Windows RT tablets with signed bootloaders ensuring you only run an authorised operating system which will only allow you to run authorised applications. It is Palladium all over again, just a few years later.

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kb
FAIL

Re: Windows 8 FAIL

I was reading a quote from an actual usability expert, one that works for one of the large software houses advising on UI design and I think she nailed it when she was asked about Win 8 and said

"Windows 8 is designed for content consumption rather than content creation and multitasking. Whereas content consumption can easily be done on other media, such as tablets and phones, production and multitasking is still best suited for PCs. Windows 8 appears to ignore that."

Honestly I couldn't have said it better, its "Microsoft WINDOW" design for single tasking mass consumption while ignoring that passive content consumption is a VERY small part of what anybody uses a PC for. Even my little old lady customers make their little calendars with the grandbabies on it or run their little chat programs while they surf so their friends can pop on and talk to them when Win 8 is strictly about trying to sell MSFT customers on an appstore and blindly buying all their content (at a pretty good markup I might add, most are even more expensive than the iOS version) from them. But MSFT can pretend all it wants, slapping a pastel paint job won't make us buy the WinPhone or Surface and all this is doing is killing OEM sales at what frankly couldn't be a worse time.

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Anonymous Coward

@Dave 126

It seems fairly straight forward to install a 3rd party Start Menu replacement.

You seem to assume that TIFKAM is the only problem with the Windows UI (and thus that pre-Win8 Windows UIs had no problems).

Sorry to burst your bubble but the Windows UI lacks so many basic features that I don't even know where to begin the list. Oh sure there are probably some programs out there that partially implement those missing features in a clumsy way but that doesn't quite cut it.

Want an example? I tried several programs supposed to allow me to scroll a window or a control without focusing it first. No luck, none of them work correctly. Same goes with a number of other features that I tried to "fix" using 3rd party programs.

Conclusion: when I have to use Windows I'm stuck with a sub-par UI and I gotta live with it.

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Meh

Re: Windows 8 FAIL

@kb - your "usability expert" seems not have noticed the Desktop. At all.

Makes you wonder about these "experts".

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WTF?

Re: @Dave 126

I tried several programs supposed to allow me to scroll a window or a control.

Seems pretty easy to me. I'm no WPF expert but I'm pretty certain I could make that happen, although to be fair the window or control in question would still fire events during scrolling.

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FAIL

Windows 8 suffers from one big problem - MS wanted in on phone and tablet sales.

I was being shown windows 8 laptop by a salesdroid over xmas and I was stroking the screen trying to get it to respond .

"It's not a touch screen" the droid said

"It's a touch screen user interface" I replied

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Anonymous Coward

Which suggests that you agree that MS' argument is the case - generic hardware was supplied to run W8 when it should have been a bit more special.

The HP envi looks pretty good, touchscreen, trackpad, keyabord, detachable tablet section.

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When I went to look at Windows 8 at PC World, nearly all laptops with Windows 8 were not touch screen.

To me it looked like the hardware manufacturers just dumped Windows 8 on old hardware (I mean hardware created for Windows 7) to try and sell old stock.

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Touch screen laptops

Windows 7 has supported touch screen since launch, so I suggest the lack of Win7/Win8 touch-screen laptops (and desktops) is saying something about both the actual demand for touch-screens and the price point implications of installing them.

Interestingly, the only times I use a desktop's touch screen is when I'm guiding a user through something, as it means I don't need to wrestle the mouse away from them. Also the user tends to stay engaged, whilst when you take over the mouse they tend to sit back and relax...

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Touch screen laptops

Most of the workstations around the office have 2 mice(?) attached for exactly this reason! Well spotted sir.

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Stop

are you ok?

I assume that you do not own a X-Box 360.

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Anonymous Coward

I thought that flogging had been banned...

"...Gartner said last week that during Q4 2012 Windows 8 didn’t make a “significant impact” on PC shipments and other analysts said sales of Windows 8 are lagging Windows 7.

Now Microsoft is planning to reboot its launch of Windows 8 next month. On Tuesday the company gave 9 February as the date for the US and Canada unveiling of the Intel-powered Surface Pro tablets. But sources tell us Microsoft is actually preparing for a February “relaunch” of Windows 8..."

Its dead, Micro-Dudes, from EFI bios, through schizophrenic UI, to less than inspiring apps...

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Re: I thought that flogging had been banned...

Maybe sp1 with a start menu?

I can dream can't I?

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Boffin

It's no the lack of start that's the problem

I've been using Windows 8 on non-touchscreen PC and laptops for a while now.

Not missing the start button, typing what I need is quicker and made me realise how I'd stopped using the Start button in windows 7, preferring to search.

BIG problem is that the 'modern' apps don't appear in the task bar, so as soon as you're using a mixture of 'modern' and 'proper' apps, switching becomes fiddly.

For me, HyperV was enough of a reason to upgrade, but not convinced many people care about that!

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Re: It's no the lack of start that's the problem

I appreciate HyperV is probably better, but I still use WindowsXP mode a lot. Losing it means finding a legit copy of XP somewhere.

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Re: I thought that flogging had been banned...

"Maybe sp1 with a start menu?"

It's got a start menu. Try it you might like it, but until you actually use it stop knocking it. The start menu functionality is the same as in Windows 7 except it's full screen.

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WTF?

Re: I thought that flogging had been banned...

> it's full screen.

Full screen might have been appropriate 10 years ago, on 640x480 screens, but when I have a twin-head setup with dual 1920x1200 monitors there is no excuse for anything being 'full screen", unless perhaps I request a video to be displayed that way.

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Pint

Re: I thought that flogging had been banned...

That was what I realised the first time I used one. Basically, Microsoft asked themselves "How can we put in a touch interface with the fewest number of places where we change the code?"

Answer - whip out the Start Menu and directly replace it with the "Modern" UI!

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Re: It's no the lack of start that's the problem - HyperV

But Hyper-V Server 2012 is available from MS as a free download ...

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Re: I thought that flogging had been banned...

Re "start menu", tried it, didn't like a pointless full screen view when it just needed a fraction of the space.

All windows 8 needed to be a contender is a proper classic shell - allow desktop by default and stop throwing us out of it when we want to run another program.

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Linux

Re: I thought that flogging had been banned...

> All windows 8 needed to be a contender is a proper classic shell - allow desktop by default and stop throwing us out of it when we want to run another program.

The perfect approach would have been for the device to look like an old copy of Win7 so long as you had a mouse connected or the screen vertical and have the thing switch to touch the moment you actually touched it. Use the magic of computer automation to guess what approach was best for the given situation and allow the user to easily override.

No one was clamouring for a tabletized desktop. Plenty of people were clamouring for a tablet that can be an old school desktop when needed.

"Wrong Way Peachfuzz"

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Windows

Re: I thought that flogging had been banned...

yes, but not everyone want's to flip back to Metro in order to get to the start menu. Despite the internal research, despite that some prefer to use a search function instead of the start menu, some people used it and don't like it gone.

So given people's response, it is useless for MS to dictate personal preferences like that. MS needs to keep in mind that if X person want's to configure the OS in X way, that they should attempt to allow such where at all possible.

and yes, I am using Windows 8 right now....

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Re: I thought that flogging had been banned...

yes, I concur. There's a number of changes that should be done. Two of them is a return of the Start Button/Menu for the desktop version, and the ability to choose if one boots into Metro/Modern UI or not.

If MS allows us to configure our machines as we see fit, they will have more happy customers.

Of course some people have no intention of being "pleased."

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