Business Issues, Technology, Applications

IT Favors Windows 8 OSes as mobile platforms

Survey credits durability of Microsoft Office

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Think Microsoft is on the decline? Think again.

That's according to a survey of 100 IT managers, 48% of whom said they plan to standardize on Microsoft OSes -- Windows Phone 7.5 and 8 and Windows RT tablet -- for their mobile platform. The survey was written up in an IDG News Service story and was conducted by ThinkEquity, a finance and research concern. Three months ago, Microsoft's share was 44% in the same survey.

Please comment if this does or doesn't dovetail with your mobile strategy.

The durability of Microsoft Office is credited for the company's strong showing in the survey. 

"We have increasing confidence that [Microsoft] is well positioned to leverage its Office franchise to perhaps continue to dominate the corporate PC environment as the platform shifts from desktop/laptop to mobile device," ThinkEquity analyst Yun Kim said in the story. 

There's also some buzz around Windows 8, which along with Microsoft's Surface RT tablet makes its debut on Oct. 26. 

During the same three month period, Apple's share grew from 10-14% while Google Android dropped from 11 to 8%.

Of course, what CIOs and IT managers say does not necessarily reflect the reailty that end users will use whatever they want. And a sample of 100 IT managers is at best a glimpse of what might happen. 

Another dynamic to keep in mind is that Microsoft with the Surface RT tablet is essentially making and selling PCs for the first time. Click here for an analysis of what Microsoft competing with its Windows partners means. 

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David Oliver
David Oliver 1 Point | Wed, 10/24/2012 - 15:57

The temptation to use the Microsoft is actually more about extending the same tools and services being used already that look after and protects laptops and desktops to tablets.

Currently if using Android or iPad means using an additional Mobile Device Management (MDM) tool to manage security, authentication and connectivity. Many of MDM’s plug in an existing environments management tools such as Active Directory for instance but this all means that an IT department has to grow a capability to look after it. Obviously the preference would be not to do this at all, or retire it and save money. So the choice isn’t really about 'fanboy-ism' but really about cost.

So Microsoft have made their offering comparable to the competition and updated, with the ability to managed and secured by the latest generation of their management tools. I can see many enterprises will use the ability to manage Surface devices as a justification to migrate to the latest generation.

Apple has promised for some time to make the iPad more Enterprise friendly, well the time to deliver on that promise is fast approaching.

John Dodge 1535 Points | Wed, 10/24/2012 - 17:23

Yes, Surface would seem The Trojan Horse. The big question is whether PC users can make the transition to Windows 8. I've read where it is such a UI sea change that enterprises will move to it slowly...if at all. 

David Oliver
David Oliver 1 Point | Thu, 10/25/2012 - 06:04

Clearly from the success of iOS and Android users are up for UI changes as long as they are intuitive. With the advent of BYOD initiatives it is clear that IT departments cannot go at their own pace but at the speed of change their business dictates.  

John Dodge 1535 Points | Thu, 10/25/2012 - 12:05

From the reviews I've read, Windows 8 is not all that intuitive (frankly, a MacBook with OS10 isn't either especially if you've used a PC for most of your career) ...that it takes a while to get confident with it. It certainly is interesting and I look forward to trying it. I remember moving from DOS to Windows 3.1 was difficult...moving to OS/2 was impossible. Twenty years ago, users accepted that moving to a new platform would be difficult unless you were using a Mac and even that was not so easy. I don't think users are in the mood or have the spare time to wrestle with a new OS that could take a weeks or longer to master. 

Paul Calento 255 Points | Mon, 10/22/2012 - 13:05

Move to Windows 8 rests on the hw/sw/solution integration, which will vary by vendor. Don't dismiss the learning cure involved with the move to Windows 8 tablets. Familiarity = adoption. Windows 8 isn't necessarily the same Windows. There are UI challenges (it is different than what many are used to, potentially requiring training), compatibility issues (See Silicon Valley Mercury News) and, the gorilla in the room, which is that many organizations have deployed a different approach that closely links tablets and phones.

--Paul Calento

(note: I work on projects sponsored by and HP)

John Dodge 1535 Points | Mon, 10/22/2012 - 13:50

I have not used it yet, but I've read where it is substantially different. It has no start button for starters. I have also read less than flattering early reviews. It will be interesting to see what kind of traction the Surface RT tablet gets and how many Microsoft partners like HP sign on to make and market them. The new dynamic is that Microsoft is makling and selling tablets...and it does not have to pay the 80 bucks per unit license or so for Windows.