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Why Eric Schmidt is wrong about Apple-Android being the defining fight

By Rodney - October 11, 2012 84

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Xposing your Android’s powers

Google Chairman, Eric Schmidt today made the bold statement to renowned yay-Applers All Things Digital that the defining fight of the tech industry today is Android vs Apple and the only players who now matter are Apple, Google, Amazon and Facebook. When it was pointed out he forgot Microsoft, Schmidt said this wasn’t a mistake.

I believe it is.

If we discount for a minute that Facebook is a serious player in the world of IT and will remain so (highly debatable, as their share price plummets every day), let’s look at the exclusion of Microsoft from the list of serious players and what this says about Google’s mindset on this issue.

It’s no secret that Microsoft have utterly failed to make significant roads into the mobile market place. Windows Phone 7 has approximately no marketshare (ok they have like 5% or so) and this has actually gone down over the last year. It’s also no secret that Microsoft have failed to gain any semblance of “cool” and that they’re also managing to drag Nokia down with them. It’s not even a secret that nearly everyone who looks at the new Windows 8 interface-formally-known-as-Metro doesn’t like it. However this isn’t the whole story.

Google’s enjoying fantastic success with Android right now – and why shouldn’t they: it’s the best phone OS there is right now. iOS is static and hasn’t improved since 2007 and Windows Phone 7: well, while reviewers all kind of like it, it basically has no apps and no one cares about it. Google develops more and more functionality and features for Android all the time and ties it in better and better with their services.

However what really ties you to Android? Really? Gmail? Nope – Gmail is going to be available anywhere. Youtube? Not likely. Google Apps? No – they already run fine on Windows. Content? Unlikely there, as well. I have bought maybe 2 books and a couple paid apps from Google Play and that’s not an uncommon story. Besides, I have GDrive on my Windows PC and I’m aware of methods to run Android apps on Windows, if I was desperate. In any case, many smartphone apps simply provide functionality PCs already have.

And this is the key point. Google doesn’t really care what OS you use at the end of the day, as long as you’re using their services. They’ll even service iPhone users. Google’s in it for the clicks.

What I don’t think Google are taking into account (or at least not publicly talking about) is what’s going to happen when I can go out and buy an Intel based Windows 8 tablet or even phone – and then run every single Windows application I care to on it. Seriously stop and think about this for a minute. I mean every Windows app you have. Ok, Call Of Duty is going to suck on a single core Motorola iRAZR but give it 12 months and try again. By then, things could have gotten very interesting.

If Microsoft do this right, it’s going to be game changing – and right now, Google doesn’t have an answer for it, that I can see.

Why would I buy a laptop or a PC for my staff ever again if I could buy them a single tablet – or even pocket sized phone – that just connects to a dock or cable and voila – it’s now a fully fledged PC, running all my corporate software, legacy or otherwise on a full sized monitor with keyboard and mouse.

All the apps that matter to most users (and virtually all businesses) can be run on Windows just fine, thanks (in fact most exclusively run on Windows). So why have an Android tablet and an Android phone, plus a Windows laptop and / or PC. Why not just have the one device to rule them all? At the very least, Windows 8 stands poised to decimate Android tablet sales overnight. As I mentioned in my Microsoft Office article, running genuine productivity software on a tablet is still something of a rarity, while Microsoft’s Surface Tablet is the first tablet device that’s aiming at exactly this market, first and foremost.

Apple is years away from having things this tightly integrated and even if they could get there tomorrow, the corporate world wouldn’t care because they can’t run their legacy applications. Google’s even further away than Apple. Microsoft is releasing exactly this product this in less than two weeks.

The reality is, for many home users, this isn’t going to matter immediately (it may over time, however). Apple will be partially shielded by iTunes and the enormous amount of content people have purchased through it and tied to their iDevices (although much of iTunes also runs on Windows). Google doesn’t have this level of content based shielding yet and unless Eric Schmidt is playing coy in his interview at All Things Digital, it shows a startling lack of insight in the upper management of Google which might well allow Microsoft to make a very serious comeback.


Rodney's comes from a background of enterprise systems integration and now runs a cloud computing company. He has a love of all things Android and open and loves it when technology makes us amazed or excited. Rodney uses a Nokia 930 (Windows Phone) and a Samsung Galaxy 10.1.

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84 Responses to “Why Eric Schmidt is wrong about Apple-Android being the defining fight”

  1. Jason G says:

    I keep finding myself surprised when people talk about Microsoft as having a future. Windows became strictly an ie test platform and occasional gaming system for me back in 2006 when vista made my then sweet 3ghz 64bit pc crawl like it was dying. I jumped ship then for linux, and android has only added to window’s irrelevance. 6 years on, ms means nothing to me beyond those crappy browsers I’m forced to support because gov departments upgrade about 5 years (or more) behind the times.

    Current score: 0 Kudos
    • Rodney says:

      More than 70% of users disagree with you. Nearly every business does, too – and that’s what matters. Individuals, small shops and early adopters can live life on web apps. Corporations cannot.

      Vista certainly was a pile of garbage, pre Service Pack 1 and even after it, it was only “sort of ok”, at best.

      I started my business 11 years ago (man I am old) running 100% Red Hat or Solaris servers and desktops and I am a long time Linux advocate. However now we have significantly more Windows servers in our cloud offering than Linux because they run the apps people actually want. The only Linux servers left run network/filtering tasks or web servers.

      I could get crucified for saying it – but it’s true – Windows 2012 Server (Server 8) is *fantastic* and significantly more advanced, easy to use and generally powerful than any Linux offering I have tried (and we’re still running Linux, too, so I consider that I know what I am talking about here).

      Windows 8 (and I am including Server 8 here), while having a terrible interface, is technologically superb. Storage spaces, SMB3, virtualisation of machines, native NIC teaming, virtualised storage etc are comically simple to set up in Windows 8 and absolute nightmare to configure in Linux. This doesn’t even address than 13 years after its release, Active Directory still has no credible competition and more than 15 years later, Exchange is still virtually unchallenged. For these reasons, Windows remains extremely relevant in the corporate world and will continue to do so for some time.

      I generally find when people bag Windows they’re coming from a very user oriented mindspace – and it’s a 100% legit space to come from. I just come from an Administration perspective, because that’s where I live and it’s a polar opposite world. I get where you’re coming from on a user perspective but I think you’re underestimating the role Windows plays in business.

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      • Rodney – I hear you, but the business world is moving away from Microsoft products. Look at what every young company is doing – they don’t use MS Office and they don’t host any IT infrastructure for productivity tools. Every useful Office program has a web based equivalent, email is hosted in the cloud, files are shared via DropBox, code is hosted on GitHub. I highly doubt a company like Facebook is using Microsoft products.

        Microsoft has a youth problem, and that’s the point. They still have a massive business and will continue to for some time. But it’s only going to wan unless they figure out how to become relevant to users/companies unencumbered with legacy systems. New companies are no longer willfully choosing Microsoft as a starting point, they’re looking elsewhere.

        To your argument, it’s all well and good I can run any Windows program on a mobile devices – but what Windows programs would I care to run on my mobile device? If the mobile revolution has taught us anything, it’s that applications designed for the desktop don’t port well to mobile. Companies are rebuilding web applications into native applications to meet the UX requirements. The same is needed for any native desktop Windows application.

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        • Ryan says:

          Serious companies where the employees don’t work on bean bag chairs and play foosball in the boardroom don’t use Chromebooks and Google Docs. Microsoft isn’t going away anytime soon Google fan boys.

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      • My problem with this whole thing is that Office 2013 is going to be subscription only at $399.99/year if you want the full thing, and older versions of Office won’t run on Windows 8. If they go forward with that plan (see the linked Ars Technica article), then I don’t think people are going to be willing to rebuy their entire ecosystem yearly at that price.

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      • John says:

        Office 2013 starts at $100 / year, you’d only need to choose $399 if you want Access or Publisher.

        Also, the subscription offerings gives you 5 keys that you can manage, so you can use them on your desktop PC, your wives’ mac, your tablet – that’s 3 copies.

        Rumour goes the iPad and Android versions will come out sometime in 2014, so that’d be your 4th and 5th key.

        Productivity software, cross platform, at this price is seriously a great deal.

        Current score: 0 Kudos
      • Toby says:

        You’re Spot on Rodney. Administrators of large corporate networks would agree. The views in this article totally align with my own opinions regarding tablets and windows 8 in the corporate environment. The software out there on the existing tablets is not developed with an enterprise mindset- most of it by small individual developers. Fragmented is the best word i can use to describe it. I love our Android Phone, linux is great for some servers to set and forget but the majority of corporate software is run using .net/sql server/AD permissions/MS Office/SharePoint etc. To have all these apps just work on a tablet would be amazing.
        One thing i have noted over the years is speaking to anyone who doesnt have a business perspective to relate to has a very hard time understanding this. It’s often a waste of effort to educate some on this…

        Current score: 0 Kudos
      • nil says:

        – This doesn’t even address than 13 years after its release, Active Directory still has no credible competition and more than 15 years later, Exchange is still virtually unchallenged. —

        Rodney Please go install zentyal 3.0. Most of what you are talking about ends very soon.

        Current score: 0 Kudos
      • Jason G says:

        Yeah, I’m not convinced Rodney. And I am coming from a business perspective. I’ve worked as database admin, server admin, developer, web developer for ISPs, IT services companies and most recently for a small firm where I am the IT department. –

        Understand when I say Windows “stuff” I mean IIS, .Net, AD, MSSQL, Visual Studio etc, when I say Linux “stuff” I mean the whole open source stack Apache, PHP/Tomcat, Kerberos, mySql, CUPS, etc.

        From my experience:
        1) Windows stuff, generally is no easier or harder than Linux stuff. AD is nice, in large multi-seated and hot-seated organisations, but otherwise, meh, and is a bitch of a management overhead for smaller organisations.

        2) Windows stuff is hugely more expensive than linux stuff. All the MS bull about TCO is just that, bull.

        3) Windows stuff (server and desktop) requires more resource to achieve the same goals, both in raw tech AND in management time.

        4) Windows stuff is less stable (especially on the desktop) and less powerful (especially on the server).

        Currently I run the IT for a company that has 5 iMac/Macbooks, 4 Linux servers, 2 Linux laptops, 2 Windows laptops, and about 12 mobile devices (iPads, iPhones, Android phones, and my 1 Android tablet).

        My previous employment was with an ISP where there were maybe 5 windows computers and everyone else had Macs or Linux machines (maybe 20+ desktop machines in all) and our servers were split maybe 90% -10% between linux stuff (BSD, Solaris & Ubuntu) and Windows respectively.

        I gotta say, in none of my professional experience, have I seen a strong business case for Windows over the alternatives. I know that it’s common place to use Windows in the enterprise, but I think people really do it more out of habit now, than any compelling need.

        Current score: 0 Kudos
      • MacCruiskeen says:

        “I generally find when people bag Windows they’re coming from a very user oriented mindspace – and it’s a 100% legit space to come from. I just come from an Administration perspective, because that’s where I live and it’s a polar opposite world. I get where you’re coming from on a user perspective but I think you’re underestimating the role Windows plays in business.”

        Which is to say, corporate users use Windows software because corporate IT departments force them to, not because they actually want to. Yes, MS can use that leverage to get corporate adoption for their products–it’s been their business model for years–but that still leaves plenty of customers for Apple, etc.

        Current score: 0 Kudos
      • Brian says:

        On the Desktop, I think Microsoft is doomed. And I’m extending the definition of “Desktop” to include mobile devices. Look at the direction the desktop is moving in terms of MacOS and Windows 8 – your old, familiar interface is being replaced by iOS and Windows Mobile. And Windows Mobile, while I enjoy it, is lagging FAR behind the competition.
        Right now, iOS and Android are running the show when it comes to accessing network resources, both private and public. You state that people who “bag Windows” are coming from a user-oriented mindspace, but as a fellow Administrator, that is what drives innovation. Microsoft doesn’t care about Administrators any more than Google or Apple does. These companies are targeted at the consumer, the USER, not the Administrator. Linux is targeted at the Administrator, and see where that’s going. No, it’s time for people to wake up and realize that Microsoft’s future is in their server offerings, as they’ve missed the boat when it comes to the next iteration of the desktop – the phone and tablet. They know this, or didn’t you hear about Ballmer’s announcement about the type of company MS is? They’re even developing Office for iOS and Android, which would be something they could have used as leverage if they really wanted to try to gain inroads into the mobile market.
        And as far as your assessments in regards to how wonderful Windows 8 and Server 2012 are, you know what they say about opinions.
        The fact is that Microsoft, strangely enough, missed the boat on mobile, and that is where the future lies. The desktop PC is being relegated to the niche of Post-Production, Music Production and other processor- and disk-intensive jobs. The laptop is perfect for 70%-80% of the user base, and most to all of those could be easily replaced by a Tablet of some kind. The “home PC” is gone, replaced mostly by the smartphone and Tablet. The Cloud is taking the place of much of the file-sharing and even though you find that Windows is much easier to use, the fact remains (and you have to admit) that Linux CAN do everything that MS server can do. And as far as virtualization goes, VMware is heads and tails better than Hyper-V.
        In closing, business moves in the direction the people with the money choose for it to move, and more and more people with the money are looking to moving to a cloud-based hosting with a mobile front-end. Plus, if all the new users coming out of high-school and college are Cloud- and Mobile-savvy, guess where business is going to move?

        Current score: 0 Kudos
    • Osiris Fox says:

      Bwahahahaha! You sir, are very naive and out of touch with reality.

      Current score: 0 Kudos
  2. Jeremy D Jeremy D says:

    I agree with everything you’ve said Rodney, I think Microsoft is going to surprise a lot of people with this new Windows 8 platform.

    I run Windows 8 on my Lenovo X230 at work and overall the touch experience is excellent, I am very impressed. I don’t think the importance of having a consistent UI and design across PC and mobility platforms can be overstated.

    The MS app store will explode and their consumer population will skyrocket; their app market will have all PC users and mobility users as first class citizens, which will attract a LOT of development dollars.

    Current score: 0 Kudos
  3. Jason says:

    Ummm, where is the installed userbase of all these Windows 8 devices? Let us talk about Vista when we talk about Microsoft rollouts. The industry inertia isn’t leading us towards Redmond.

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    • lakelevel says:

      The only way to predict the future is to create it yourself. I see windows 8 (along with phone and xbox) as just the first move in a giant creation play. You have no idea what’s coming. Apple is stuck where they are because they got too big, and Google doesn’t really control these tech bombs it throws, it just gets itself into position to capitalize on them. Microsoft is on the move to create and control some very interesting tech in the near/mid-future.

      Current score: 0 Kudos
  4. Todd Mann says:

    I hope Gruber “claim chowders” this post. I can’t wait to laugh at it again in a couple years.

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  5. Mike says:

    People act like desktop, mobile and office are all Microsoft competes in. How about the cash cow SharePoint? Exchange server? Active Directory? Windows server? Microsoft’s server platforms and infrastructure are unrivaled. Sure linux has a lot of proven server capabilities, but there’s a fraction of the talent out there to run them b/c let’s face it, it’s a pain in the ass. That leaves Apple who doesn’t really compete in this area.

    Current score: 0 Kudos
    • gman says:


      Linux servers are a pain in the ass to run and Microsoft is not? Ha. That was funny.

      Current score: 0 Kudos
    • hhemken says:

      Get an old throwaway box from your garage or even from Goodwill and install Ubuntu on it (ubuntu.com). Compare that pain in the ass with a similar Windows install and update from the Windows distro disks (which you will almost certainly NEVER have). Then tell us.

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    • LOVE_MOSS_NOT says:

      SharePoint, gosh! I hate sharepoint, can this thing die, please God, let it just die…

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  6. hhemken says:

    “Windows 8 stands poised to decimate Android tablet sales overnight. ”

    Yow! Stop the presses! Everybody! Come over here and check this out! What balls! What bravery! What unmitigated and unabashed, um, I don’t even know what word to use!

    OK, maybe “ludicrousness” would have been good.

    Current score: 0 Kudos
    • I have an Android tablet and an Acer Icona w500 (one year old x86 convertible tablet) that I installed Windows 8 on. From that very second seeing Android on a tablet again almost makes me puke. It’s night and day IMO. It really shows the difference between a structured professional product and a badly stitched / glued together pile of free junk collected from the internet and marketed as an OS. Try and speak aftet, I did and will never look back. I somewhat wait for my Samsung Galaxy S2 to break to have a serious reason to spend on a Nokia Lumia 920. The best thing for MS to show Windows Phone 8 to people would be an image with Win Phone 8 available for $5 to install on Galaxy 2/3. A lot of Android advocates will see how a real alternative to iOS looks like and it’s way ahead of what Google gives now for free.

      Current score: 0 Kudos
      • Ryan says:


        I kicked my Gingerbread phone to the curb for a Nokia Lumia 920 and never looked back. I gave Android another try with Jelly bean and a Nexus 7, but it’s still too rough around the edges for me and the apps are still ugly and suck. Just waiting for a Nokia tablet so I can be Android free again. Maybe Android 6.0 will finally get it right. If Nokia doesn’t have something for me soon I’ll probably get an iPad mini honestly. I keep giving Android second chances, but the promises always fall flat. It’s smoother just like iOS, “project butter with 4 cores!” Nope. My single core WIndows Phone was smoother than any Android Jellybean device. Sorry.

        Current score: 0 Kudos
  7. alex kent says:

    “…buy an Intel based Windows 8 tablet or even phone – and then run every single Windows application I care to on it. Seriously stop and think about this for a minute.”

    yep. thought about it. it’ll mostly suck.
    regardless of technical limitations, the idea that applications written for a desktop or laptop size screen, mouse and keyboard will work well on a touch phone or tablet is proven wrong time and time again.

    despite that, i don’t think you’re entirely wrong. a common UI and common dev toolset across different platforms might turn out to be really powerful.
    it’ll be interesting to see next month, next year, how things pan out.

    Current score: 0 Kudos
    • Andy Jackson says:

      x86 Tablets (as they do today) will run everything, especially the battery. ARM tablets with battery life that make them portable for Android & iOS will not run the Windows 8 version for all apps. That one gets only the yet-to-be-seen MS RT market.

      If that’s confused a poster making it to Slashdot, what fun it will be to see consumers frustrated at Windows-brand devices not running their downloads. That will just add a fresh layer of “confusing” and “unreliable” to Windows’ public image.

      Current score: 0 Kudos
  8. Will Hughes says:

    “Why would I buy a laptop or a PC for my staff ever again I could buy them a single tablet – or even pocket sized phone – that just connects to a dock or cable and viola – it’s now a fully fledged PC, running all my corporate software, legacy or otherwise on a full sized monitor with keyboard and mouse.”

    Because Windows RT (that is: the tablet version of Windows 8, which is most certainly not the same thing as Windows Mobile) – does NOT run “legacy” applications. It’s ARM only, which means any Win32 or Win64 application just simply won’t execute.

    So, certainly feel free to buy Windows RT tablets, and Windows 8 phones – but good luck using them as desktop replacements unless all your applications are Metro applications from the Microsoft store.

    Perhaps you need to do a little more research first.

    Current score: 0 Kudos
    • For Windows 8, the word “tablet” encompasses more than Windows RT. The Surface Pro uses the conventional “desktop” flavour of Windows 8.

      Current score: 0 Kudos
      • Shayne O says:

        And desktop windows apps are terrible on tablets. Remember, windows ix86 tabs have been around for a couple of decades now, and almost universally people hated them.

        So its either Metro apps, for which there are not many, or desktop apps which are basically terrible.

        Current score: 0 Kudos
        • Ryan says:

          They can’t be any worse than the cobbled together crappy Android phone apps, which are all I have to run on my Android tablet. In fact, I’m certain they are a lot better.

          Current score: 0 Kudos
      • Will Hughes says:

        Indeed it does. However the author of this article appears to be talking about the ARM versions of Windows: Windows RT and/or Windows Phone 8:

        “Ok, Call Of Duty is going to suck on a single core Motorola iRAZR but give it 12 months and try again.”

        These won’t run legacy x86 applications.

        Current score: 0 Kudos
    • Rodney says:

      Perhaps you need to reread the article again and notice where I clearly and repeatedly referred “Intel” based Windows 8 hardware and made a point to not mention Windows RT.

      Current score: 0 Kudos
    • You can use both RT and x86/x64 the very same way in “modern UI” mode so your point is missing (RT and non RT ar equally tablet oriented). However try to put an Windows 8 x86/x64 tablet in a dock, click Desktop and run… whatever you want, from qbasic to Visual Studio, AutoCAD or a virtual machine with Linux Mint why not. Now THAT IS a device for a professional. Compare it with Windows RT or Android or iPad which are expensive browsing devices that also play Angry Birds. Of course not everyone needs this kind of device so for you RT may sufice.

      Current score: 0 Kudos
  9. Jasen says:

    First off, I’m an Apple user, so you will get my perspective.

    I take exception to the first part of your comment “Apple is years away from having things this tightly integrated and even if they could get there tomorrow, the corporate world wouldn’t care because they can’t run their legacy applications.” Apple is very tightly integrated. In fact iCloud is well ahead of anything anyone else has. Many apps that are available on both OSX and iOS talk to each other continuously and accurately….

    ….and that is where the second part of your hits the nail straight on the head. Corporate users were just getting use to their iPads and apps were just being developed for legacy programs. Should MS have this Surface, Phone, PC integration done right, Apple is relegated back to a consumer electronics company and the business world will forget them.

    As for Google, they are seriously underestimating MS. Business drives the computer industry and IT departments of medium and large companies will never trust Google because the model is built on data collection. Something consumers are willing to tolerate, but businesses will not.

    Overall, great insight on a good piece.

    Current score: 0 Kudos
  10. Windows on Server side is like.... says:

    Saying windows is a good server OS is like saying your honda civic is fast cause its a “type R”

    seriously no. Windows always has been, and always will be a joke operating system for consumers.

    As for SMB, SAMBA does SMB far better than windows ever did. Far more securely.

    What we have with microsoft is far more marketing, awareness campaigns, and FUD. Its technically inferrior, and always has been.

    In windows 8, microsoft will finally replace the aging NTFS with something new to compete against linux based EXT4 filesystem.

    The diffrence is night and day. EXT4 is lightnight fast, rock stable, supports features like journaling, and oh, get this, and error check + defrag(fsck) takes around 60 seconds on a terrabyte sized SATA hard disk. This is default install on the majority of new linux distros.

    but this is only a hold over until BTRFS comes along and blows minds with features like online resizing, subvolumes, and other good shit that your windows educated admin would not believe possible.

    Its also good to see that in windows 7 you can rotate between desktops with meta(windows key)-tab like you have been able to do in linux deskops for the last 10 years.

    Then we get to scripting and automating events, where the windows power shell brings windows up to the level of ksh an 80s era UNIX shell.

    Still no answer to BASH.

    Finally windows (8) comes out with a desktop paradigm replacement a full two years after unity and gnome-shell done so on *NIX

    What about USB3, where linux has had rock solid USB3 support for years now in the kernel.

    Modern linux systems also handle drivers far better than windows drivers as a good chunk of device drivers are now directly implemented in the kernel.

    Current score: 0 Kudos
    • ChronoFish says:

      You’re right …. and it doesn’t matter.

      LInux will never beat Windows on the desktop – and who cares…. For the consumer the desktop is dead.

      If I’ve got Putty, I have linux – it’s that simple in my environment. Windows gives me the tools that I have to have (Visio, Word, PP,Lotus Notes) and the tools that get things done (Eclipse). Our servers (file servers, app servers, db servers) are all Linux – don’t needs those things to be running on my desktop…. But my phone / tablet is where I spend “my” time. And I don’t need Windows OR Linux for that.


      Current score: 0 Kudos
    • Steven says:

      LOL what a joke…

      a) SAMBA does *not* do SMB better than Windows. It’s slower, and doesn’t implement most of SMB3 yet.
      b) ext4 has journaling and a fast fsck ? Oh amazing ! NTFS only had that since like… day 1, 20 years ago.
      c) Powershell is way, way, way far more advanced than ksh and bash. Like, you’re comparing a Ferrari(Powershell) with a Fiat (bash/ksh). Only one of the two has the ability to pass *structured data* from app to app, rather than messy text that must be parsed in kludgy ways
      d) unity and gnome-shell are jokes that no one on this planet uses. Windows 8 is not officialy out yet, but already has a larger market share than Linux *ever had* on the desktop
      e) You’ve always been able to add USB 3.0 support to Windows 7, you clearly have no idea what you’re talking about
      f) drivers: first you’re truly stupid to say that it’s better to have drivers in the kernel, this is actually way worse because it means a single driver bug can bring down the entire system. Second, if you even knew what you’re talking about, you’d know that the driver architecture for Linux and Windows is ALMOST IDENTICAL !

      All you’ve shown is that you’re a fanboy with no technical understanding of what you’re writing. You clearly have no clue at all and don’t even understand what you typed.

      Current score: 0 Kudos
      • nil says:

        –a) SAMBA does *not* do SMB better than Windows. It’s slower, and doesn’t implement most of SMB3 yet.–
        Funny enough bogus on the SMB3 part. SMB3 is in the SAMBA 4.
        –b) ext4 has journaling and a fast fsck ? Oh amazing ! NTFS only had that since like… day 1, 20 years ago.–
        ext 3 had that 2001 so 10 years late. Ext from the start had something NTFS still lacks.

        Defrag on write. The reason why ext file-systems are fragmentation resistant to the level they are. This is when you have file cached due to other operations and system knows it fragmented it can defrag it there and then. XFS also has this same with most other major Linux filesystems. Result is a defrag of a file taking half the IO operations as it would otherwise. Also on a file that is very fragmented taking less IO to write the disc than writing it in its fragmented state.

        –c) Powershell is way, way, way far more advanced than ksh and bash. Like, you’re comparing a Ferrari(Powershell) with a Fiat (bash/ksh). Only one of the two has the ability to pass *structured data* from app to app, rather than messy text that must be parsed in kludgy ways–

        Interesting enough more and more admin scripts on Linux are done in python interfacing libraries not command line. So you could say Linux is evolving the same kind of way just instead of around C# style around python.

        The recent Linux Plumbers Conference define using a shell like bash todo something from python as equal to web-scrapping instead of making a proper ABI. Yes at the start of powershell you still had to do some scrapping too not all features were in powershell.

        Linux is slowly leaving the Unix world of the shell behind. Structured data app to app is python. So what car is python. That is the important question going forwards.

        Boy someone been smoking something good.
        –Second, if you even knew what you’re talking about, you’d know that the driver architecture for Linux and Windows is ALMOST IDENTICAL !–
        In fact not true there are key differences. Linux drivers are more built around the presume that direct user-space access is off limits. This is because Linux does implement full PAE on 32 bit Linux so userspace and kernel space split address spaces also items like PaX that design in unrefering userspace. So unless you called a mapping function you were not going to touch user-space memory.

        Also reactos.org tried to convert Linux drivers to windows. Result is yes some ideas at the base of the drivers is the same. Problem is its only some. The architecture is radically different. So other than rare alignments Linux drivers in windows requires huge amounts of code and re-factoring to make lots of Linux drivers work on windows.

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  11. Irve says:

    In the shoes of Eric Schmidt I’d say you’d want to downplay the Microsoft as Apple has its own niche and its innovations have started to have somewhat diminishing returns, Facebook will peak and Amazon is kind-of-inevitably strong that you cannot downplay it. So I think you two might agree somewhat more but are in different positions.

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  12. Marius Z says:

    “If Microsoft do this right, it’s going to be game changing – and right now, Google doesn’t have an answer for it, that I can see.”

    Microsoft doesn’t have to do anything right. In fact they don’t have to do anything at all, just wait, until technology miniaturizes enough that you can run desktop business apps in a tablet or phone hardware format. The portable device space has been all about device and feature consolidation, and I don’t expect that trend to suddenly reverse because Google excluded Microsoft from some list they made up.

    Your smart phone today is a phone, a camera, a general purpose (low powered) computer, a gaming console, a map, web browser, an organizer, a calendar, alarm clock, and so much more, all in one box. Once this box becomes powerful enough to run regular desktop apps, people aren’t going to suddenly go, “oh, I can get rid of my laptop now, but let me also tag along this Android phone even though this new box already does everything”.

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    • Marius Z says:

      What I’m saying is (premature posting) is that you’re right. Google has no answer, so they have to downplay the gorilla in the room, Microsoft, and buy themselves as much time and mindshare as they can, before the inevitable happens; desktop/portable integration.

      Microsoft knows this as well, which is why they’ve been in no big hurry internally to get a credible mobile platform to market. The market will do it for them.

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  13. greg says:

    Windows 8 will have a place – having to put andriod and IOS into the enterprise has been one problem after another. At best it a stop gap measure – nothing works cleaning or at scale. BYOD is a nice dream until you lose your phone, tablet or laptop. I keep my stuff my stuff, and business separate. I don’t want to have to think about my work machine – if its broke – I call someone to fix, even though I can fix it faster. My stuff I fix, but I don’t want to fix, I want to do productive work (mine or the companies). My time is more valuable. Nobody rides for free, even though you think you do. Waiting for windows 8 – why – for the most part it works – I like my MACs I view the iPAD a nice idea, but once again I have to play games to do real work without limits. try using it to do real work when your connections are down. I run multiple VMs with multiple virtual images. I like my windows machines, if I can take most of my stuff with me and work smoothly on an off the grid – I’ll take it – (why are some of the most used business applications terminal or screen emulators) Waiting for the release of the Windows 8 tablets that are designed for real work. Cloud works for alot of things when you can guarantee your always connected. Look out Apple, Google, the train is coming and it is bringing a lot of “Hell” to your neighborhood. Jail breaking a phone or tablet to make it work in the enterprise makes no sense. I view Facebook as a nice place to sit and “do nothing productive” – I only go there when I have too.

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  14. Steve says:

    Viola? I think you meant “voila.”

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    • Will Hughes says:

      Viola – it’s like the classy version of Jazz Hands.

      Ta-da: Large Stringed Instrument!

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      • Will Hughes says:

        er, large in relation to a Violin. (They look awkward to play).

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    • Rodney says:

      Thanks – I let Chrome spell check sort it for me and I clearly wasn’t paying attention. :-)

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  15. Shayne O says:

    Considering Windows 8 will be mainly an arm platform on Windows tabs, and strictly for metro, I think your in for a rude shock if you think all those windows apps are just going to work. They need to be rewritten, and thus android and ios are *way* ahead of it in that department.

    But your missing a more fundamental point. You’ve been able to get windows pads for a decade at least before the ipad and its droid contenders came to the market. The thing is, windows apps suck on a tablet. They are designed for a method of user interaction that just doesnt translate to fat fingers and no keyboard.

    This was the critical insight apple made when it released the ipad. All the tech reviewers at the time panned it as inferior to the windows pads, and the lot of them missed the key point;- You dont buy a tablet to replace your desktop, you buy a laptop or notebook for that. The ipads and the droid tabs completely threw out the conventions of WIMP (Windows/icon/menus/pointers) interfaces and substituted a new set of UI conventions that inherently suited the format, and thus they rapidly established themselves as a tablet that works.

    Now Microsoft ended up realising this, and thus out comes Metro. And metro of course is mandatory for microsoft tablets. But metro requires apps be built from the ground up to support it, and guess what, theres very little available for that.

    Just like how theres very little in the way of WinMo apps, expect the Windows 8 tabs to be sorely lacking in available software , at least to begin with.

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    • Truman says:

      You’re almost right, current tablets don’t replace desktops\laptops. They are not yet powerful enough. But it won’t be long until they are.

      You’re absolutely wrong in comparing past windows tablets to what is going to be available. First they sucked because of the hardware just as much as the GUI. The touch screen was not accurate enough for “fat fingers” etc. But touch technology is better and software is being made for touch screen on desktops and on portable devices and it won’t be long before all software works for both.

      At that point why have a simple consumption device like an ipad\phone? (unless its for your kid\parent)

      The author is looking at this speculating 5 years into the future.

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  16. Lance says:

    Two things this article doesn’t take into account. 1) there are more mobile computing devices than PCs and 2) software as a service will kill Microsoft. Salesforce, Google Apps, etc. will kill in house IT as we know it except in a few places which require HIPAA, but even then, they will simply separate out the PII (personally identifiable information). I can’t tell you how many thick client apps (including Office) that we’ve replaced with a web version. The OS doesn’t matter anymore. Microsoft is done. And good riddance.

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  17. ChronoFish says:

    Hmm…. I think your overestimating the PC.

    There is literally nothing that will unseat Windows on the PC. Yes there will be pockets of Mac users and even smaller pockets of Linux users, but Windows IS the PC. Especially in the corporate environment.

    BUT…there is a way to get all your legacy apps, in the corporate environment, on an android phone. Citrix has a mobile app “viewer”. And it drives the point home very quickly. For as awesome as it is (and it is awesome to be able to use RDP and PUTTY from your phone) it sucks. There are two problems here. 1. Legacy apps are not made to run on the small footprint. 2. Small footprints don’t run legacy apps well.

    It doesn’t matter who does it better – every implementation of a legacy app on a tablet or phone will suck.

    But Google, FB, Apple, Amazon are NOT about the past. They are about the future. And that’s why MS best days are behind them. Yes – MS will continue to dominate the PC (much like Fox dominates cable). But just as there is a huge demographic shift away from cable that means that Fox will dominate a platform that nobody cares about, MS will continue to dominate a platform that is used “only when it has to be”.

    Developers aren’t stupid. They develop for the people – and today’s business is in a huge paradigm shift called “BYOD” (Bring your own device)…. and nobody is bringing their own desktop….


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  18. RobBrown says:

    Hi Rodney,

    The big IF is whether Microsoft can pull off the platform integration and make it compelling for consumers. They’ll probably get the corporate world but I think you’re overstating its importance: Apple sold shedloads of stuff with minimal corporate presence and I do think the corporate/consumer divide will continue for a while yet. Microsoft might have their technological integration sorted (although I have my doubts) but they are still the antithesis of cool. How can a corporation with so much money, make so many cringe-worthy TV ads?

    Also I don’t see Intel-based portable devices having the grunt to run “real” desktop apps for a while yet. There’s a lot of battery-hogging bloat inside x86 CPUs (especially ones with decent performance) so while Intel’s process advantages mean they’re close to achieving power parity with ARM, it’s also at a similar performance level. Which means that Word 2013 is going to suck.

    As a consumer, I’m taking this whole situation as a huge positive. Having Microsoft as a credible competitor is going to keep Apple , Google etc. from slacking off.

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  19. Jake says:

    You seem to ignore that in the same interview Schmidt said Microsoft’s status outside the elite four *could change with Windows 8 and Surface*

    Your entire article is moot because Schmidt acknowledges that. Really, your point could be made about ANY company not in that top four because ANY company could, theoretically, do ANYTHING and suddenly become a big player. Until it happens though, Microsoft isn’t in that group.

    Current score: 0 Kudos
    • greg says:

      Yes, I agree, the comments were based on a” point in time snapshot”. Microsoft is coming and it is bringing “Hell” to the others. Just like the four brought “Hell” to Microsoft.

      It took Apple two tries to get it right (Newton). WIndows tablet were speciality items with an expensive price tag. WIll see if the Windows 8 tablet makes it – the platform price wars are coming. The software only time will tell. At 99 cents a copy it takes an awful lot of sales for a developer to make money on and iPad.

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  20. William says:

    Why would employees work for you if you bought them nothing better than a windows laptop or a Windows 8 tablet? I cringe every time I see the lowest common denominator hardware that traditional companies saddle their employees with. You should not even care what your employees use to create work product.

    Seriously, at companies that follow the traditional Dell laptop / company Windows image model, Windows 8 is not even in consideration because of the drastic retraining costs.

    Current score: 0 Kudos
    • Alan says:

      Your last statement that Windows 8 isn’t in consideration for companies… I for one cringe at the amount of work our manufacturing based company is doing to enable BYOD for iPhones and iPads and Androids. Mobile Iron, security wipes, no Siri, no Auto Complete, Good email client, and the list goes on because of the desire to limit cloud services from getting our internal protected IP. It’s vitally important to our company to not leach our IP to places/people we have no control of.

      All this would be vastly simpler if Microsoft can come up with a credible portable tablet computer that can run all the software we run already have today and that can also run new apps that are specifically made for the form factor as well. Leave phones for checking email, making phone calls and joining webex…things that are dead simple for that platofrm. Then put the real ‘work’ to a convertible tablet and for that I’m hoping that Windows 8 can bridge these gaps.

      I for one see Microsoft’s direction as a good one, though their execution has always been suspect for hitting one out of the park.

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  21. Aq says:

    To say that M$ hits a cord with the business world with its upcoming tablet is like saying RIM has a future in its Playbook. In the end, the *mobile* business world is closer to Blackberrys than M$. For a business user, the playbook would make more sense than the untested M$ tablet. Don’t forget that larger businesses don’t jump wagons on unproven solutions. The M$ tablet is poised to be an unproven solution for a while. But to be fair to M$, their Win7 and Server platforms are business favorite. But this is insufficient of a reason to justify a future in M$ tablet.

    The current shift is away from Blackberry at the moment. Throw cloud computing into the mix with iPad & Android platforms, you get a very robust solution. Especially taking virtual desktop into consideration. Don’t think laptops will go away anytime soon, at least not for power users. But the majority should be able to replace their existing desktop/laptops with tablets. By this token, a few ignorant companies will most likely jump on M$ tablets: emphasis on *few*.

    M$ tablet is bound to go down the same path as Windows phone. Period.

    Current score: 0 Kudos
  22. Brian says:

    Wow. You’re delusional.

    Employees at my $25B company are entirely productive using unsanctioned devices (i.e. Mac’s and iPad’s) with unsanctioned apps of their choice. I don’t know of anyone who cares much about using Microsoft apps at all. Sure, MS compatibility in a variety of places is required but it’s primarily document compatibility. Sharepoint and Lync compatibility would be nice but while MS has it’s head up it’s ass everyone has gone out and found alternatives. Business users are not stupid and with so much useful technology readily available… without IT, they will use whatever is available that gets the job done.

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    • AC says:

      Uhu. So your “$25b” company doesn’t have an IT department?


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      • Brian says:

        Of course it does… but employees are purchasing their own iPads, iPhones and using any and every online service they see fit– internal apps are mostly web based. Sure, it’s creating problems for IT, especially around compliance– but these problems will not be solved with a Microsoft device which can run ‘every single Windows application’.

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  23. William Johnson says:

    Rodney, your lack of insight is only exceeded by your lack of writing ability.

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    • Arlo Seznick says:

      This comment seems needlessly harsh…

      However, there is a a grain of truth – in that the article has a number of spelling and/or grammatical errors. From the article:

      “Windows Phone 7 has approximately no marketshare (ok they have live 5% or so)”


      “Why would I buy a laptop or a PC for my staff ever again I could buy them a single tablet”

      No matter what platform or OS you’re running, simply running spellcheck without rereading what you’ve written is a recipe for writing that looks unprofessional. That perception will affect how people view your message, no matter how unfair or irrelevant it may seem.

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  24. ukoda says:

    You make some sound arguments but I wouldn’t invest in Microsoft. There is three markets, consumer, old school enterprise businesses and new adaptive businesses.

    Window only won the consumer market because they didn’t care what OS their PC came with. It was Microsoft’s inclusion of a ‘free’ copy of Windows with every new PC that made them the market leader. They are losing the consumer market for the same reason. Your vision of plugging in a mobile device to a screen and keyboard to replace the PC is correct, but that mobile device will not run Windows and the consumer wont care then either because they got either Android or iOS for ‘free’ too.

    A new adaptive business has no loyalty or lock in with Microsoft and will simply go with the best option of the day. That was Microsoft but change is being seen with them and I would not be surprised to see Microsoft become a bit player there too.

    The old school enterprise market is the only one they can hold, for now, but I expect that market to ignore Windows 8 and stay with Windows 7 just like they did with XP. This market is what will keep Microsoft profitable for the next decade as it takes the enterprise market decades to change direction. Even this market is not a sure thing for Microsoft. With everyone outside this market using Linux servers instead of Microsoft servers they must be leaking into this market. With huge uptake of BYOD they must be getting pressure from the other end too.

    And about those servers. Every few years I try the latest Microsoft server and every time I come away glad I don’t have be the sys admin for one. A GUI does not compensate for the horror that a Microsoft server is to use. I have never been able to cut and paste GUI instructions the way I can with good user guide and a bash prompt.

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  25. Brian Ashe says:

    Wow. You can claim to be unimpressed by iOS 6, or feel that everything it has, it should have had all along, but to claim that it is “static and hasn’t improved since 2007″ is so unbelievably, provably, objectively incorrect I don’t even know where to begin.

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    • Mike O says:

      I think he means – and I am inclined to agree – that to the average iPhone user they have essentially been buying the same phone every time. iPhones have improved, but mostly in areas that the general at large user won’t notice. Techies like us will appreciate retina displays, better CPU etc, but these are things non-techies might not even notice or care about.

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      • James Thiele says:

        Only ‘techies’ appreciate retina displays? Get real. Anybody who sees a retina display knows it’s better than regular displays.

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      • nil says:

        –Only ‘techies’ appreciate retina displays? Get real. Anybody who sees a retina display knows it’s better than regular displays.–

        Really do a blind test method. Take 2 identical retina displays tell people that one is a retina display and one is not(yes you could swap what one you call each just to make sure there is not bias). Guess how many people will say the one you told them was a retina display is better. Same is true for taking some just below the so called retina level. Reality there is only so many receptors on the back of your eye. To normal humans to tell the difference between apple retina and a screen just under Apple retina you have to like having the screen 30 cms or less off nose. So this means a person under 5 foot for normal holding location of devices. If you are over 5 foot you cannot see the retina quality most of the time anyhow so why are you paying for it.

        We should have height rated devices(you between x and y height this device is for you). Just like we have different size shoes. The taller you are the lower the DPI you require on screen to get retina grade for your eyes in the normal holding location.

        Problem is with computer devices it still one size fits all method without size markings so people can buy the right devices for them. Yes we have equal to a shoe store with stack of boxes on shelf and no sizing and you have to take what you get.

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  26. Shea says:

    Microsoft is still good like sure Windows 7 is boring without any apps but it still works I don’t see Google making any computers as good.

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  27. Ivaylo says:

    The key point is that in nova days and the near future “legacy windows applications” will be used only by corporations or companies that didnt get the clear picture of what is going on in technology and how they can use it to gain flexibility and improve their business processes.

    I am an CIO in a company where in last two years we moved from MS Exchange to Google Apps for Business. We outsourced the whole infrastructure in a Private Virtual Cloud i(VPC) n a Datacenter, hosted and ruled by our provider. We replaced our legacy (in-house Windows’s) ERP to a new one provided as SaaS. On the VPC we implemented CITRIX technologies to present the Windows application which still are not replaced by SaaS or cannot be for whatever reason.

    And we build profiles for Apple iPad’s: there is a Citrix client for it, there is a Google Apps ecosystem running. The same we do for android devices and on we replaced the usual PC workstations with thin clients running Windows Portable . Now we are experimenting to make a cheaper chine’s tablet running Android to be replacement of that thin client’s… and it seems that we will have a success.
    Yes – i am sure that we may adobt MS surface too, but the question is – why should we care what will be the device and what OS it is running ?

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  28. justin says:

    I find it funny when people say “oh, there’s a web alternative to MS Office.” This is when I know I’m talking to some lowly IT admin-wannabe that has never set up business plan in his life.

    I’ll say this: after OVER A DECADE of Linux, I gave it up. Nowdays, I’m all Mac and Windows. I still think the Mac is the best OS out there (I guess you never make it back from the Mac, as they say). But Windows 7 is seriously competitive. Linux is behind the curve. C#, PowerShell, etc. I’m sorry, Linux has lost this war… The Linux culture is stupidly revolving around C and scripting lesser languages (Python…).

    Microsoft will probably, in the near future, present gesture recognition for the OS = waving hands in from of the computer (you know, Minority Report style). Microsoft might be a sort of huge fat elephant, but recently, they seem to be on the track of innovation again. Here and there, you can see these little incremental changes – not to mention the big ones (Windows 8).

    The only thing is I fear they seem to be playing with fire when they threaten to alienate user and their legacy apps. If there`s one advantage Windows has is the ammount of apps. Lately, I’ve been happy with some great commercial apps for the Mac, but Windows has a lot more.

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  29. David says:

    What people are also overlooking is that Android development sucks, it sucks big time. Trying to do anything in Android is like pulling teeth and is in no small part the reason why most Android apps suck compared to their Apple equivalents. A colleague of mine recently switched to a HTC phone after using iPhone for the last 5 years and he was surprised at how poor the apps were that he just took for granted on the iPhone.

    .Net development in Visual Studio is the V.I.P room of software development. I’d be developing mobile applications right now if not for Android being an extremely poor environment and Apple forcing you to do all your development on a Mac. Once Microsoft enters the tablet market in anger I, along with countless other developers will be able to write high caliber applications in an environment we are confortable with.

    What people are also forgetting is that Microsoft aren’t innovators. The weren’t the first to the table with a windows based OS. What they are extremely good at though is software tooling and have unrivalled experience in producing operating systems.

    In a few years time people may very well be bemoaning Microsoft in exactly the same way they did when they dominated with Windows.

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    • Jeremy D Jeremy D says:

      Sorry David but I must disagree, for people with a Java development background working with Android is super easy!

      My theory on the high number of lower quality apps in the Android store is simply that app development is so much easier and the barrier to entry so much smaller (no need to buy a MAC etc) that lots of people are able to give it ago, including people who are learning on the job or hacking in their spare time.

      Additionally the Android store hasn’t been able to attract as many commercial partners developing rich apps which has meant a reduced offering of super polished options; however this has definitely improved recently (yay).

      To get started developing on Android all you need is a willingness to learn (Java/IDE/APIs) and 30$ to pay for your developer account!

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      • David says:

        (I’m not the same David as the poster above)

        Sorry, man, but the above David is correct. I am currently developing an Android app, and having come from a C# .NET background I am surprised at how horrible the Android development experience is. I would give anything to be able to use C# and WPF on Android (I can get the C# experience by using MonoDroid, but still can’t do the WPF part).

        The Android developer tools are always crashing. Eclipse is a horrible IDE. I have to restart the virtual Android OS after every few builds or else it stalls while trying to upload my app to it. It’s just horrible.

        The previous David who posted is correct: Visual Studio and .NET is a dream to develop in – and you don’t realize it until you have tried it. I have never had a better UI development experience than when building WPF applications.

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      • Jason G says:

        Of course, you really don’t even need that. The $30 for your developer account is only if you are making your app public. If you work entirely on in-house projects, or just want to get your feet wet, all you need is a JAVA IDE.

        Personally I’m not a fan of Eclipse, but I love AIDE – an app that lets you develop for android, right on your ‘droid device. I run it on my transformer tablet and develop/compile/test without touching my Linux or Windows PCs. Then I dropbox or email the APK to myself and install it on my other devices for testing.

        Certainly I don’t think Java is striclty speaking “better” than C#, nor the reverse, but I think where David is really coming from is the same as anyone faced with a language or platform they’re not familiar with, just a complaint against the unfamiliar.

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  30. Abdul Alhazred says:

    Rod, have you tried running Windows apps on a phone or a tablet? Well, first of all you can’t run them on a phone, mobile Windows is a very different OS and isn’t any more compatible with desktop Windows than Android is. If you run stuff in Win 8 on an x86 tablet then you have a clunky old Windows app UI on a touch screen, bleh. Given that every such app has to be retooled to run on this tablet form factor anyway where exactly is MS’s advantage? I don’t see it.

    Sure, there are verticals where Windows always was useful enough to go on a tablet, but that’s never been a significant market.

    I don’t know if MS is exactly irrelevant, but MS shows no signs of being able to figure out how to execute, and they aren’t a market leader in anything except desktop OSes that are rapidly becoming a niche market themselves.

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  31. Hahahahaha says:

    You’re an idiot.

    Unless the whole point of this article was to generate ad revenue. Then, bravo.

    I work for a billion dollar, publicly traded company and Microsoft is (almost)completely irrelevant here. The only people that use any Microsoft products are in the accounting department and that is only due to their interworking with other billion dollar companies that are still stuck in the 90s. So, less than 1% of our staff uses Microsoft.

    I know that last sentence is kind of contradictory since you are saying: 70% of businesses still use Microsoft products and I’m saying they don’t and then I actually reference an example where they still do. Haha.

    Let me see if I can explain this any better: Don’t you think all those ~70% of companies still using Microsoft products are researching alternatives so they can eliminate the millions of dollars in ridiculous Microsoft licensing fees? I remember I time when Microsoft was ~95%+ right?

    So, technically, you’re right. Microsoft is still relevant………….for now.

    Current score: 0 Kudos
  32. Phil says:

    I don’t want Microsoft to go away, and though I’ve used linux since 1996, I still do most work on Windows 7. However, I think you are completely wrong to think that current windows apps will make a difference on phones and tablets.

    They won’t.

    Reasons? Well, where do I start?

    1) Non-metro apps are second class citizens on Windows 8
    2) Tablets and phones will mostly run ARM cpus
    3) Windows RT won’t support installing anything other than apps from Microsoft app store
    4) The UI for most existing windows apps just wont work ona tablet or a phone
    5) There is no mouse and keyboard so input method is wholly inappropriate for most existing windows apps

    And I bet there is more…

    Current score: 0 Kudos
  33. W. Anderson says:

    The article writer – Rodney – states that “if” Microsoft executes well and gets the sales it “expects”, then it “will” be relevant. However Eric Schmidt was talking about the realities of technology, particularly mobile today.

    The vast majority of articles or comments on technology stories seem to hinge on what Microsoft did yesterday as a monopoly, and extract that to apply tomorrow, in areas where the company has show (as usual) no innovation or creativity, just patent attacks and threats to gain advantage.

    Good lock Microsoft dupes on wishing and hoping your favourite company into a viable future.

    Current score: 0 Kudos
  34. Dave Haynie says:

    Yeah, it’ll be true that you can, technically, run any one of your Windows 7 applications on an x86 Windows 8 tablet. Probably not the iRAZR, that’s running Android, after all.

    Here’s the thing… you can do that today with a Netbook — run every one of your Windows applications. Not all at once, of course, because they wouldn’t being to even fit on a typical Netbook, much less run well. I have just one application package on my big PC at home (Cakewalk Sonar) that’s over 18GB installed. Sure, you’ll have up to 128GB on your x86 tablet, but don’t spend it all in one place.

    And even once installed, do all of your vast collection of Windows applications run well on that tablet? Probably not — they’re written for mainstream or even high end PCs, not Netbooks. There’s not enough RAM, not enough CPU, the application is for 64-bit Windows, etc.

    Now consider the tablet and smartphone. Sure, you CAN make a tablet with laptop chips… Microsoft is reportedly using an Ivy Bridge i5 in their Surface Pro tablet. That’s more or less mid-range, capable enough. But this tablet is going to cost more than most laptops, that’s not what most tablet buyers want. And is it really going to deliver 8-10 hours of use? That ‘s what’s expected of a tablet.

    The new Atom for tablets from Intel is just about as powerful per core as an ARM Cortex A9. But it does supposedly run cool, so it’ll deliver a good x86 tablet experience. But it’s going to drag on many if not most WIndows 7 applications. It only supports 32-bit Windows, but that’s not a problem, as it only supports 2GB or so DRAM. And of course, you’re not going to run any Windows 7 software on this, successfully, without a keyboard and mouse of some kind… and I don’t think Microsoft’s going to resurrect humanity’s love of the chicklet keyboard with that keyboard/cover thing they’ve got.

    The ARM tablets these days are fast… really fast. This is so only because they’re the fastest devices in their OS’s product line. No one’s writing Android or iOS applications for a quad core i7, 8GB RAM, and a 3TB HDD. But there are plenty of Windows applications that like that performance class. They will be useless on a tablet.

    This is also a risk Microsoft is taking by forcing desktop people to use the tablet interface and APIs. Could be that’s all soundly rejected. But what if it’s not? If desktop users as a whole come to love the Don’t-Call-It-Metro interface, this pushes the average Metro users up into the i5/i7 performance class, pretty much overnight, since no Windows 8 tablets or phones exist. Can Microsoft really keep performance inflation from making Windows 8 stink on tablets and phones, despite the UI changes? Will be interesting to watch…

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    • mark says:

      I am pretty sure MS will reject your App if it runs slow on any targeted Device. So if it only runs on i7 smoothly you probably have to target it exclusively. They also chip Tools that inspect bottlenecks and warn you if your app is slow. And it is required to run them before you submit your app to the store.
      I also don’t expect that users who want to do Video Editing, 3D Rendering and other CPU intensive stuff will buy an Atom based device and think it will run fine.

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  35. Sergei says:

    Mobile is overrated, but Microsoft is no longer relevant.

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  36. Paco says:

    So, the article says that MS is basically in the same position as Netware or IBM where a few decades ago and because of that its future is bright and influential…?

    Hated by their users that find it dated and annoying, but loved by the corporate IT guys, and at the same time the company is re-purposing itself to be something very different from its roots. That formula lead to irrelevance in the OS business before but this time it will lead to ruling the place?

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