10 Reasons to Avoid Replacing Windows XP With Windows 8

10 Reasons to Avoid Replacing Windows XP With Windows 8
For the Enterprise, Productivity Will Slip
Microsoft Is Stubbornly Sticking to the Design
Windows 7 Is Still Available
The Jump Is Too Big
Macs Are Worth Considering
Chrome OS Might Work Better
Windows 9 Is Around the Corner
The Tablet Experience Is Subpar
It'll Require a Costly Hardware Upgrade
The Software Experiences Are Different
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10 Reasons to Avoid Replacing Windows XP With Windows 8

By Don Reisinger

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For the Enterprise, Productivity Will Slip

When it comes to evaluating new technology solutions, the corporate world cares most about employee productivity. Realizing that, switching from Windows XP to Windows 8 might be a bad idea. The operating systems are so different that no employee will feel at home with the new software for quite some time. Meanwhile, productivity, and thus, revenue, will slip. It's a bad idea for corporate customers.

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Microsoft Is Stubbornly Sticking to the Design

Microsoft might have improved Windows 8.1 by making search better and by improving some user interface elements, but the software company hasn't done much to change its overall design. Quite the contrary, Windows 8.1 is still the same old operating system that users have come to know and dislike. That's a problem for Windows XP users.

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Windows 7 Is Still Available

Why go with Windows 8 when Windows 7 is still available? That operating system comes with a similar design to Windows XP, which deals with the productivity question, and it also has a Windows XP mode that allows users to virtually run the old OS. Granted, Windows XP mode might not be the best idea, but it's an option, nonetheless. And it's something to keep in mind.

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The Jump Is Too Big

There's a major jump between Windows XP and Windows 8. Not only are the operating systems designed differently, but the way in which users need to interact with the platforms is different as well. Add that to the many changes under the hood, and one can make the argument that an incremental approach to changing operating systems is better than going all-in on a major upgrade.

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Macs Are Worth Considering

Macs might be a worthy alternative to Windows XP. Although Macs bring to bear their own challenges with productivity and design differences, OS X is more intuitive than Windows 8. Plus, the operating system integrates well with iOS devices and has been getting much better software support, courtesy of its built-in App Store. Macs are arguably a better option for consumers than Windows 8 machines.

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Chrome OS Might Work Better

Google made some headlines recently when it announced that it would offer a $100 discount on Chromebooks to those who switch from Windows XP. While it might be a marketing gimmick, it's also something that customers should consider. Chrome OS is simple enough to be ideal for novices, and it can work well for young children. Chromebooks were the top notebook form factor last year by unit sales for a reason—customers saw value in Google's product.

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Windows 9 Is Around the Corner

Why go for Windows 8 when Windows 9 is right around the corner? It's believed that Microsoft will unveil Windows 9 sometime in the next few months and then launch the operating system in 2015. Windows 9 is likely going to fix the issues in Windows 8 and deliver an enhanced software experience that both the enterprise and consumers want. It might be a good idea to wait for that rather than go with Windows 8.

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The Tablet Experience Is Subpar

There are some customers running Windows XP right now that want to move to a tablet to handle their computing needs. Microsoft is saying that it can handle that issue with Windows 8 on devices like the Surface. The truth, however, is that the Windows 8 tablet experience is subpar. Anyone who wants a high-end tablet experience should go with an iPad or an Android slate, nothing less.

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It'll Require a Costly Hardware Upgrade

Not everyone is looking to spend boatloads of cash on a new device. In fact, there are some people on a budget who own XP machines who don't want to spend anything. For those folks, Linux might be an option. So too might be sticking with XP for a while. If consumers move to a Windows 8 machine, they can expect to spend several hundred dollars to do so. And for many of those people, that's too much to pay—especially for a software platform that hasn't proved itself.

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The Software Experiences Are Different

One of the benefits of sticking with Windows is that the same programs that work with XP will technically be compatible with Windows 8. There's just one problem: Windows 8 apps have a different look and feel to them that customers might not like. Developers in many cases have built programs to reflect Windows 8's style. And there are many people who will take issue with that.

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