Technology – Is Windows 8 really a failure?

Old 6 Comments on Technology – Is Windows 8 really a failure? 48

This is another installment of my Technology posts, geared towards those of us who are technology professionals and support users or clients.

When we talk about Windows 8, we see some real snarky comments from some people. Those who don’t like the metro interface / start screen, REALLY don’t like the metro interface / start screen. But in all seriousness, from a business perspective is Windows 8 really a failure ?

In the 15 months after Windows 7 was released, it sold 240 million copies. In the 15 months after Windows 8 was released, it sold 200 million copies. Now, industry ‘experts’ question these numbers and whether they’re truly accurate, and whether they represent actual machines being used every day, but none the less, even the numbers are slightly off (both of them), it still stands to reason that Windows 8 is not a complete and utter failure.

Something else to keep in mind, and this goes along the same train of thought as my “Is the PC actually dying ?” post, how many people simply haven’t upgraded to Windows 8 because they have Windows 7 ? This is the same philosophe that you can attribute to Windows Vista. So many users had gotten Windows XP just a few years earlier, they simply didn’t see a need to upgrade to Vista, and instead opted to wait for the ‘next’ version to come out before upgrading.

The other thing to keep in mind, most people aren’t upgrading just their operating system. Most people are upgrading their operating system because they’re purchasing brand new hardware at the same time. If you look at most computer retailers, like Best Buy and Staples, operating systems come included with their pre-packaged computer systems. So users aren’t even choosing their operating system, their new computer simply comes with whatever it’s been pre-loaded with. And like I said in previous posts, consumers simply aren’t buying brand new computers every other year.

Keeping all these things in mind, we can start to see trends that might help explain why some operating systems are more popular than others.

My prediction will be that the next version of the Windows operating system, ‘Windows 9’ or whatever it will be, will again spike sales to numbers similar to that of Windows 7.


Martin Lehner

Martin Lehner is an technology professional working for an IT services firm in Whitehorse, Yukon (Canada). He has been working in the technology field for over a decade. With a degree in Business Admin and numerous industry certifications, Martin leads a team of IT professionals that provide third party support for clients. Originally starting a company to offer web development services, Martin quickly realized that clients wanted the entire spectrum of technology services. When Martin is not at work (which is not often, since his company offers 24/7 support), he is busy at home spending time with his family.

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  1. Mitchell Lewis July 30, 2014 at 11:09 pm

    I agree

  2. ebey August 3, 2014 at 7:40 am

    bro buy windows 8 and run windows 7 on virtual machine lol

  3. Jeff Newman August 3, 2014 at 11:20 am

    Looking over the latest flyer from Micro Center (a PC retailer), it’s interesting to see the number of new machines offered with Windows 7.

    It’s also interesting to see PC makers, who used to use the tag line “Dell/HP/Lenovo/Acer recommends Windows 7” now using the line “Dell/HP/Lenovo/Acer recommends Microsoft Windows,” with no version mentioned at all.

    Many windows 8 machines sold have included a downgrade license which permits the user to install Windows 7 on them.

    Out nearly two years, there’s no call for Windows 8.x desktops at the office, and at home, I have one Windows 8.1 VM that’s almost never powered on.

    Windows 8. Huge failure.

    • Martin Lehner August 3, 2014 at 3:22 pm

      Well, when Windows Vista and even 7 came out, you could still buy Windows XP machines too. That’s partly just because of the amount of OEM licenses a manufacturer still has in stock, already paid for. Just because Windows 8 came out doesn’t mean someone like Dell is going to immediately turf the 100,000 Windows 7 OEMs they still have.

      Fair enough for your office, our experiences are obviously much different. I’m not sure what exactly you do, but for me and my clients, I (myself personally, this doesn’t include my other staff) have deployed some 200+ Windows 8 machines so far. Only 1 had to be swapped out to Windows 7, and not because the user didn’t like 8, but because a critical piece of software would not run on 8.

  4. Jeff Newman August 4, 2014 at 11:00 am

    When we briefly looked at Windows 8, we found a list of new features that had to be managed. I’d be curious as to what others are doing in this regard.

    If I can ask, did you connect users’ Microsoft accounts with their Domain accounts? Did you put any policies in place to block the Microsoft Store altogether for some or all users?

    Did you use any third-party software to add the Start menu back to the desktop?


    • Martin Lehner August 4, 2014 at 11:08 am

      We generally don’t link Microsoft accounts to domain accounts, we just create local-only user accounts. No policies in regards to blocking the Microsoft store (honestly, most users won’t ever even open it, but if they want to, meh, buy whatever).

      No 3rd party software to bring a ‘traditional’ Start menu back. To be really frank, the Start screen / Metro interface has been hyped up for too much in regards to how ‘poor’ and ‘difficult’ it is to use. Not more than 120 seconds with a user that’s never used Windows 8 before and they can use the Start screen with ease. In fact, the most common comment I get is “really ? It’s that easy ? So why is everyone freaking out about it ?”.

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