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Forrester: Windows 8 Won't Be Commercial Standard for Enterprises

Global research firm Forrester released a report citing that due to high levels of enterprises just now making the move to Windows 7 from Windows XP, Microsoft's latest OS will continue to go largely ignored.  

According to Forrester's latest report, "IT Will Skip Windows 8 as the Enterprise Standard,"  48 percent of commercial PCs are already running Windows 7 and 76 percent of enterprises talked to in the study said they are in the middle of deploying more Windows 7-based machines.

And the current deployments of Windows 7 may lead to what Forrester calls "migration fatigue," especially for those organizations that typically skip an OS generation after the deploying a new version.  

"To be reasonably considered an enterprise standard, approximately half of company-issued PCs must run Windows 8 by the time Windows v.next hits the shelves," said Forrester in a release.  "Windows 7 hit that mark. However, Forrester doesn't believe that Windows 8 will become the next commercial standard..."

The number one reason respondents gave for not moving to Windows 8 is that most shops don't see enough major management capability improvements over Windows 7 to justify the move. And only 7 percent of those polled by Forrester said the new UI is an improvement over Windows 7's interface.

"I have to believe Microsoft expected better enterprise adoption for Windows 8," said Forrester analyst David Johnson, the lead author of the report, to PCWorld.

While enterprises aren't making the move to Windows 8, the Forrester study did find that employee interest in the new Microsoft OS is very high. When 10,000 workers were surveyed, 38 percent said they would actually prefer to work on a Windows 8 machine, while 35 percent chose Windows 7 as the platform of choice.

Even though employee demand will not lead to IT making Windows 8 a corporate standard, Forrester said that organizations should make a strong push to support Windows 8 and allow for Windows 8 devices, like the Surface tablet, to enter the enterprise.

Microsoft is expected to make a new push for both consumers and enterprises to adopt Windows 8 when it unveils more information on its OS update, Windows 8.1, in the coming months.

About the Author

Chris Paoli is the site producer for Redmondmag.com and MCPmag.com.

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