Forbes: Microsoft’s Vista slips again – Steve Jobs must be waking up a happy man this morning

“The new version of Microsoft Windows, called Vista, has slipped again. It was originally going to ship in 2003. Then 2005. Then 2006. Now in early 2007. I’m not surprised, having seen a demo of Microsoft’s new programs at an ‘event’ for tech buyers in New York last week,” Daniel Lyons writes for Forbes. “The new programs are phenomenally complex, with scores of buttons and pull-down menus and myriad connections among various applications… Meanwhile, 500 tech buyers sat there in the dark, their eyes glazing over from the sheer mind-numbing pointlessness of most of this stuff. The audience laughed out loud when the Microsoft guy showed off a kludgey system that lets you fetch Outlook e-mail messages using voice commands from a cell phone.”

“Even more ironic is that Microsoft has ginned up a new slogan, ‘People Ready,’ which apparently is meant to describe its software, or maybe it describes companies that use its software, or whatever. Who knows? It’s one of those phrases that means anything, and so means nothing,” Lyons writes. “Who makes this stuff up? Do they actually pay this person? And is Microsoft just figuring out now that its programs are used by–gasp–people? …Worse yet was the grumbling afterward in the press room. Why the hell did they drag us here? we wondered. We’d been promised big news and some earth-shattering announcements by Microsoft flacks who insisted this was something we shouldn’t miss. Instead, we got a demo that was about as compelling as a root canal followed by a 15-minute press conference with Ballmer, the Microsoft chief executive who seems incapable of speaking at any level softer than a bellow.”

“Worst of all, I can’t believe Microsoft actually held this big nonevent “event” only a few days before announcing another screw-up in Vista. If Ballmer knew he was about to announce a delay and still had this event, he’s crazy. If he didn’t know Vista was about to slip again, then Microsoft is in worse shape than anyone realizes,” Lyons writes. “Given Microsoft’s delays I can’t believe open-source stuff still hasn’t caught on for desktop computers… Why not at least switch to an Apple Computer Mac? Apple’s new operating system is stable, reliable and easy to use. The applications are simple, gorgeous and work well together. And they’re here. Today. Steve Jobs must be waking up a happy man this morning.”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: “At least” switch to an Apple Mac? Versus open source alternatives, Mac OS X offers the personal computer user much, much more. The vast majority of people who use personal computers would be far better off with an Apple Mac than any other personal computer.

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50 Comments

  1. It saddens me to say this, but I think Vista slipping will have almost no effect at all on sales of PCs or Macs / OS-X.

    The sheep who will buy a windows PC without really considering the alternatives, just because pretty much everyone else uses them will carry on. Vista won’t even be on their radar, late, crippled or otherwise. They won’t wait for Vista, they’ll just get XP … but they also won’t upgrade to Vista ina hurry – if ever. People who bought a machine with 98 and still have that machine, generally still run 98.

    This is not a criticism of Apple or OS-X, of course, this is just the reality as I see it of the people who go to PCWorld/BestBuy or whatever and buy (sorry, get sold) the machine closest to their maximum budget that gives the salesman greatest commission – regardless of whether it’s the right machine or not.

  2. I posted this earlier today but bears repeating:

    Apple creates media buzz by releasing great products on a fairly regular basis.

    M$ creates media buzz by regularly delaying the release of a second rate product.

  3. The delay is being blamed on security, drivers and performance issues. For a product that was due out something like 3 years ago, that’s pathetic. Those 3 issues are what OS X has an absolute lock on (10.0 excepted).

  4. It is clear from the comments that Microsoft has, as the Chinese say, lost the mandate of heaven. It is not just this latest delay, but the obvious contempt for Microsoft displayed by the trade press and Microsoft employees that demonstrate this.

    Windows has reached the end of its useful life. It has become a software Gordian Knot. For Microsoft, it will also be the rope by which their business will be hanged.

  5. I guess Balmer isn’t doing his usual: dancing around his office in a thick sweat, about to have a heart attack. Well maybe the heart attack applies. This guy needs firing. Actually, don’t fire him. It is fun watching Micro$oft die a slow and painful death.

    There are open source alternatives for Apple, too. Everyone should be using NeoOffice, so they don’t have to buy Micro$oft Office. It does the job and doesn’t require X11 or XDarwin.

  6. I’d be almost as thrilled about people switching to Linux as people switching to OS X. The computing world would be much better off in the long run if there were multiple OSes that many people used. Having one OS used by the vast majority of people is a big reason why the past 5 years have been stagnent in terms of what computers can do. Just think of the amount of money spent on cleaning up these virus attacks.

    Imagine if Windows, OS X, and Linux each had 33% market share. All cmpanies would support all platforms. Each platform would have to work equally well to standards that the others could use. It would not matter what platform you used – people could choose the one that worked for them. Dell, HP, and the other beige box manufactures would give you a choice of what OS to have installed and it would be cheaper to go with Linux.

    Apple has been pushing the boundaries of what can be done. Linux is quickly catching up to XP. Microsoft has been getting a lot of bad press lately and it doesn’t sound like it is going to be changing before November.

  7. And after it’s fully stripped, the Vista box will contain a Windows upgrade CD with a nifty screensaver that flashes the word, “Vista” around your monitor with adjustable transparency and drop shadows. That’s it. Just the screensaver. But it WILL be innovative and groundbreaking. After all, it took 10,000+ software engineers, billions in R & D, and half a decade to produce.

  8. MS NEEDS to get the security thing right because Apple is the standard right now for available working systems that look great, are easy to use and they’re not full of security bullet holes.

    MS can copy the look and feel but if they don’t get their system secure they will be the laughing stock of the industry and NOBODY would have a reason to upgrade to Vista regardless of how it LOOKS.

    As somebody with a significant AAPL investment, lord I hope and pray Apple uses this opportunity to advertise that the Mac has a great feature set, cool free software, security, and affordable hardware (my new MacMini Intel Solo rocks). These are things that could be brought across to the consumer in hard hitting 30 second TV ads.

    At $599 a MacMini costs a couple hundred dollars more than an X-Box and the Mini doesn’t do the big games, but the little Mac does something a dedicated entertainment-only game box will never do, it improves your life.

    The moment the X-box becomes a standalone computing appliance that approaches the MacMini feature set, that’s when Dell and HP better wake up and smell the fire, because its them becoming toast.

  9. Novell is working on providing a standard Linux desktop, I’m pretty sure they bought Suze Linux and are in the process of packaging it with an office suite and standardized installation procedure. A stable secure Linux loaded with software for $79 would be an awesome thing if it was a standardized product rather than flavor of the month.

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