Summary: Vista 8 and bloat on Surface lead to lawsuits already; Microsoft too focused on disrupting the winner (Linux/Android) and not on fixing its own products
WINDOWS and Surface are two old brands (the latter is being reused), but they cannot on their own guarantee the survival of a monopoly. Vista 8 is missing the boat and the Windows franchise gradually dies. Microsoft is unable to become a hardware company and now come the lawsuits we expected, starting with Sokolowski:
Andrew Sokolowski, a lawyer in Los Angeles, claims that he bought a Surface with 32 gigabytes of storage last week. But he quickly ran out of space after loading it with music and Microsoft Word documents. He discovered that a significant portion of the 32 GB storage space was being used by the operating system and pre-installed apps such as Word and Excel. Only 16 GB was available for him to use.
Here is commentary from a pro-Linux site:
Microsoft’s Surface tablet allocates almost 50% of the storage for itself thus leaving a user with 16GB on a 32GB tablet. Microsoft said in a statement. “Customers understand the operating system and pre-installed applications reside on the device’s internal storage thereby reducing the total free space.”
That sounds like an extremely poor operating system which has such a huge overhead.
My 16GB Google Nexus 7 tablet offers me more than 13GB of storage allocating less than 2.8 GB for the system, same is the case with other Android devices. The way Microsoft’s mobile OS reserves lion’s share of storage to itself is outrageous and shows how inferior the OS is when compared with Android.
Android can be much smaller. The problem is, Microsoft tried shoehorning a desktop OS into a mobile device.
Microsoft is in deep trouble, their two main product lines are failing, and the blame game is intensifying. Steve Sinofsky gets the blame this time for the failure of Windows 8, but the real problem is the patterns that are so clearly illustrated by these actions.
Microsoft is largely irrelevant to computing of late, the only markets they still play in are evaporating with stunning rapidity. Their long history of circling the wagons tighter and tighter works decently as long as there is not a credible alternative, and that strategy has been the entirety of the Microsoft playbook for so long that there is nothing else now. It works, and as the walls grow higher, customer enmity builds while the value of an alternative grows. This cycle repeats as long as there is no alternative. If there is, everything unravels with frightening rapidity.
A company that plays this game for too long becomes set in their ways, and any chance of real change simply becomes impossible. Microsoft is there, and has been for a long long time. Their product lines have stagnated, creating customer lock in is prioritized over creating customer value, and the supply chain is controlled by an iron fisted monopoly. Any attempt at innovation with a Windows PC has been shut out for over a decade, woe betide anyone who tried to buck that trend. The history books are littered with the corpses of companies that tried to make change the ‘Windows experience’. Microsoft’s displeasure is swift and fatal to those that try. Or at least it was.
A former Microsoft employee tried telling Sinofsky that it is a lost cause:
Congratulations on leaving Microsoft. Unless you have bills to pay, you won’t regret it. I left at the end of 2004, and have since studied a vast and amazing — but still flawed – world of computing out there.
For example, I discovered that we should already have cars that (optionally) drive us around and computers that talk to us. Linux on the desktop is powerful and rich but failing because of several strategic mistakes. Google claims to be a friend of Linux and free software, but most of their interesting AI code is locked up. Programming should be a part of basic math literacy for every child. The biotechnology world is proprietary like Microsoft, which is stunting progress in new medicines.
Thanks, VMware. In Microsoft’s case it turned out that nothing was using that value and it could be replaced without breaking things.
That’s according to the UEFI guy, who helped legitimise a headache to Linux users. As we explained before, Microsoft is too focused making life miserable for Android distributors (with UEFI requirements and patent litigation), so it loses sight of its own products, Even when Vista 8 is given away cheaply or for free people now choose Linux/Android. What an interesting time it is to be a Linux/FOSS advocate! █
“It’s easier for our software to compete with Linux when there’s piracy than when there’s not.”