Some Say They Will

By David Morgenstern  |  Posted 2006-11-14 Print this article Print

Switch Rather Than Fight Vista"> Speaking of the Mac, I was intrigued by the interest expressed by readers in Apple and Linux alternatives to Vista. In another recent column, I asked whether we will see an immediate surge in Vista upgrades or if most enterprise and SMB sites will take a wait-and-see approach. Only 13 percent of readers had a good word for Vista, while 26 percent were adamantly against moving from Windows XP. Of the rest, 61 percent said they would wait a long, long while before installing the upgrade.
However, 29 percent of responders said they were looking at the Mac or Linux distros instead of Vista. Of the readers who rejected Vista and who would wait, the number was 34 percent. One third—I find that a high number. (And I weeded out obvious Mac users, so all these readers appeared to be actual Windows users.)
Is a "perfect storm" of Mac sales on the horizon? Click here to read more. Of course, most of these readers wont move to the Mac or Linux and will eventually accept Windows Vista, even if that shift takes a couple of years. But its obvious that some will explore the different platforms and choose to move off the Windows platform. According to Apples latest quarterly report, more than one Windows user an hour buys a Mac in each of its stores (now numbering 165). These "switchers" obviously like what they see in the Mac. Click here to read more about Apples quarterly report. Will Vista and its Aero interface sway these disaffected users and hold them to the Windows platform? Most of the readers that responded to my column said they were already familiar with Vista, and many had tested one of the Release Candidate versions. The message just isnt getting through. Microsoft seeks to insinuate the goodness of Vista into the minds of its users. This is evident in the spiritual language used in the branding talk out of Redmond and how sounds, buttons and icons will reinforce the "Vista user experience." Another example of this effort is the new "hardware start button" for Vista. Its an update to the venerable Windows key on keyboards. Microsofts documentation says that the key is designed to be an "attractive and discoverable actuator for launching the new Start menu and search experiences in the Windows Vista family of operating systems. The Hardware Start Button creates and deepens affinity between physical hardware and the Windows Vista user experience while complementing the brand platforms and product design languages of hardware manufacturers." Hello! "Creates and deepens affinity between physical hardware and the Windows Vista user experience?" Guys, its a key on the keyboard (albeit, a prettier version than the one thats there already). Sound familiar? Key candy. And another thing: Allchin last week said that while Windows Aero "may sound like just a cool name, its actually an acronym that stands for Authentic, Energetic, Reflective and Open." Acronym candy. David Morgenstern is an eWEEK contributing editor who focuses on storage and systems. He can be reached at

Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest news in desktop and notebook computing.

David Morgenstern is Executive Editor/Special Projects of eWEEK. Previously, he served as the news editor of Ziff Davis Internet and editor for Ziff Davis' Storage Supersite.

In 'the days,' he was an award-winning editor with the heralded MacWEEK newsweekly as well as eMediaweekly, a trade publication for managers of professional digital content creation.

David has also worked on the vendor side of the industry, including companies offering professional displays and color-calibration technology, and Internet video.

He can be reached here.


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