Microsoft is taking a big gamble over the next few months with Windows and Office, the two products responsible for most of its revenue and profit, according to Gartner. It is a risk that Microsoft must take to stay relevant in a world where mobile devices with new modern experiences are becoming the norm.
“When the PC dominated personal computing by providing a single device for messaging, internet access, gaming and productivity, Windows was a powerhouse for Microsoft,” said Michael Silver, vice president and analyst at Gartner. “However, smartphones and tablets, led by the iPhone and iPad, have changed the way people work, making the PC just one of several devices people use. The PC is increasingly simply a peer with other devices.”
With Windows 8, Microsoft is trying to address the excitement of the tablet market by adding tablet interface to Windows.
“Microsoft’s approach is very different from Apple’s and Google’s, where phones and tablets have much more commonality than PCs and tablets,” Silver said. “This plays to Microsoft’s strength in PCs, leveraging it not only to enter the tablet market, but also to improve its share of the smartphone market.”
“Windows 8 is not your normal low or even high impact major release of the OS,” said Steve Kleynhans, research vice president at Gartner. “It’s the start of a new era for Microsoft!