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Users Happy with Windows 7 -- and with XP

Windows 7 is doing part of what Microsoft needed it to do. It's eliminating the specter of Vista and delighting customers. (There was a time when Microsoft folks used the word "delight" as if it was the last verb on the face of the earth.)

A Forrester Research study says that most early adopters are happy with Windows 7--86 percent, in fact. Great! The study also showed that, interestingly enough, plenty of consumers (43 percent) just plain went out and bought Windows 7 rather than obtaining it by buying a new PC.

That speaks well, we'd say, for the product--almost half of the Windows 7 users surveyed went out of their way to purchase and upgrade the new OS and install it on PCs they already had. That shows that there's interest in the OS itself; it isn't just gaining momentum as PC sales increase.

But (didn't you see this coming?) the survey also revealed that XP is hanging on to its user base and not letting go. Forrester's findings indicated that 43 percent of PC owners see no reason why they should move away from XP. We would argue, as we did earlier this week, that they'll start to see some reasons soon, but the XP die hards are...well, dying hard, we suppose.

Of course, all of this is just consumer stuff, but it's still an indicator of where Windows 7 is in users' minds right now. And, as all partners know, IT decision makers take their user bases heavily into account when making decisions on technology acquisitions--and particularly when deciding on something as universal as an operating system.

So, at this point, we'd say that folks like the idea of Windows 7 a little more than they like the idea of actually installing it. That might be the case in the enterprise as well--Windows 7 gets lots of love from IT folks, generally speaking, but how many of them have actually implemented it at their companies? Not as many as love it, we can say with some confidence. (They will, however, have until the end of the year to try the OS for free.)

Again, we at RCPU are still convinced that new servers and applications and other cool stuff coming from both Microsoft and third parties will make XP irrelevant and mostly useless fairly soon--probably within the next couple of years. And the good news here is that when XP does finally start to fade, there will be an excellent replacement waiting in the wings. Then, Windows 7 will do the other part of what it's supposed to do--conquer OS market share and line the pockets of Microsoft partners.

Keep the comments coming on XP and Windows 7. We might just run some of them this week. You can send them to [email protected].

Posted by Lee Pender on 03/31/2010 at 1:22 PM


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