Some Facts About Business And Some Suggestions for MS
Perhaps a little perspective from a buisiness person.
The cost of changing has caused us to put off changing from XP and it is the same for many corporate users.
I don't mean the cost of the MS licences, a couple of hundred bucks for OS and Office for each of our PC's is nothing.
No the cost is that we would need to upgrade our database to the new version, the version we have runs on SCO UNIX and only works with Win XP clients.
New DB License £36,000 (minimum)
New monthly Service Fee £1000 (vs £600 atm)
Lead in time from signing contract to installed in our office 6 months
Run off accounts on old system and transfer records to new system 12 months side by side operation
Tie up loose ends 6 months
Re-train all staff on new windows and office versions and new database.
The total cost to us, both in cash and lost productivity during the 2 YEAR change over period is well over £100,000
We have 10 users.
Now just imagine what the impact on a bank or insurance company or government department with 1000's of users would be.
The technical issues of upgrade vs don't upgrade are a relatively minor consideration in many businesses.
Again speaking as a business person and not as an IT type, the shareholders of MS should retire Steve Balmer and hire someone to turn MS around.
If it was me I would:
Fire the design team of Win 8 (particularly anyone involved in the GUI) - someone has to burn for that crime.
Announce that win XP would be supported indefinitely (on a paid subscription of say $10pa per PC),
EOL or just straight out kill Win 8.
Sell new Win 7 and Win XP licences to any one who wants either.
Announce and start work on a true successor to XP and 7, designed to be efficient (low cpu and memory), secure (UNIX / LINUX / MAC OS manage it so we know it can be done), robust (no more shitty DLLs and drivers taking down the whole system), self healing (if something crashes, repair/restart/reinstall automatically), modular (if you don't use a feature it doesn't occupy memory or CPU and swap out parts for alternatives, eg GUI's) and most important OS feature ever JUST WORK QUIETLY IN THE BACKGROUND SO I CAN DO MY WORK!
With regular patching XP and Win7 are both good for the time it would take to do a proper job on a replacement.