Re: [newtech-1] ?This really wasn?t what our customers were looking for?

From: Victor S.
Sent on: Friday, March 14, 2008 8:01 PM
Asif, Michael, I can see how you can think and feel the way you do from where you are sitting.
I'll bite my tonge and let it all work out for you on your own. Lessons best learned that way :)
 
p.s. I appreciate how you guys have now outgrown the cussing, baby steps, eh ?

On Fri, Mar 14, 2008 at 12:24 PM, Asif Youssuff <[address removed]> wrote:
Michael Mellinger wrote:
> You left out the first sentence.  I think it's relevant.
>
> "Newsflash from ASUS - the company is predicting that the XP Home
> version of the Eee PC will outsell the Linux-based version by 3 to 2.
 >
> 3. They ship with Windows XP (Home Edition), which is being
> discontinued in June.
>
> 4. You can always upgrade to the latest Ultimate version of Linux on
> the Eee, but you've hit a dead-end with XP.
>

Yeah, I think the last one is really the most interesting thing about
this, not the idea that Windows may outsell the Linux version.

Anyone who is famililar with the way that the market sees OSes knows
that Windows is a definite winner, not necessarily for technical
reasons, but because of the major advantages one can reap from using a
mass market OS with great support.

Anyone who is a proponent of Linux that doesn't admit to this is likely
being dishonest.

However, at the same time, these network effects can be effectively
mitigated with software that inter operates with Microsoft software
(hell, isn't that supposedly one of Microsoft's new goals?) and hardware
that is Linux compatible.

The fact that the eee sold so well, even with the tremendous amount of
advantages that Windows commands over Linux likely means one (or both)
of two things:

       For some people, the cost premium of Windows isn't worth it over Linux

       or

       Linux is "good enough" regardless of price

I'm not even thinking about people who are avowed Linux users, who
actually prefer Linux, but rather the people who don't really care what
OS their machine runs, as long as it lets them get their work done.

Linux is definitely moving forward in this direction, as sales can show,
as will simply playing with the OS on your own -- this isn't your dad's
Linux, where configuring X was a chore. It's easy to install and work with.

Vista is going to be a problem for Microsoft in the low end. It's so
heavy compared to Linux, that for ultra cheap commodity hardware, Linux
may begin taking a lead. Of course, no one in the Microsoft camp is
scared yet, since they are targeting higher earning users who buy more
expensive machines and OSes.

But for the low end, Linux based machines may start eating away at what
has traditionally been Microsoft's winning platform -- cheap hardware,
along with easily pirated versions of Windows.

What did Bill Gates say about China? something to the lines of "We don't
care about the piracy as long as they are pirating our stuff. We'll
figure out how to make money off of them later."

Well, if they start losing that segment now, imagine what happens when
this groundswell of support from the low end begins to equate into it's
*own* network effect -- when Linux becomes better supported, and it's
easier to get *Linux* on your expensive PC rather than dealing with an
unfamiliar OS that doesn't run your software?

I'm not saying this is going to happen overnight. But the abomination
that is Vista on low end hardware may end up decimating Microsoft's
market share in a segment that has traditionally been served by pirated
copies of Windows.

They may not have made them money, but they helped Microsoft with their
great ecosystem.

By ceding the low end in this manner, Microsoft may have quite by
accident given Linux a leg up.

-Asif



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