While speaking at a Las Vegas conference on Thursday, Gartner analysts Michael Silver and Neil MacDonald said that Microsoft’s Windows product is collapsing in the and must make radical changes to its operating system or risk becoming doomed.
“Windows as we know it must be replaced,” Gartner said in its presentation.
The analysts pointed out the slow adoption rate by businesses, just 6% to date, and that the Vista code base is so large. That means changes take years, and only high end computers can really take advantage of its 64-bit operating system.
Microsoft earns $15 billion a year for Windows alone, and another $16 billion for Office and Exchange Server in 2007. That’s 60% of Microsoft’s total revenue, and profits from those groups float the rest of the company.
The software giant isn’t a company without its consumer and business software profits. Online advertising could be Microsoft’s next venture to save Windows and the company. Microsoft probably wants search engine company Yahoo more than we know. Perhaps the company has its own ideas to launch online docs that will compete with Google Docs.
Meanwhile, while Apple can build the iPhone on OS X, Microsoft has had to extend another lifeline to Windows XP because its latest product can’t even fit onto the cheap mini-laptops from HP, Asus, and others.