As we wrote in late October, Microsoft has a lot riding on its new Windows 8 operating system. The company has a huge financial investment on the line, as well as its reputation as an industry leader and innovator.

So, should Microsoft be concerned that early results are “sagging”? Steven Jones and Shira Ovide report for the Wall Street Journal that: “The company’s executives and some PC makers have said they didn’t expect a fast start for Windows 8 PCs and tablets. For one, corporations are the biggest buyers of Windows computers, often taking a year or more to upgrade to new versions of Windows. Still, a slow start for Windows 8 fuels worries that the operating system won’t be the catalyst for reviving PC sales, which have slowed sharply as consumers have opted for tablet computers, such as Apple’s iPad. The continued sag of Windows PC sales despite a wave of new devices ‘raises questions about whether this is a transitional issue, or have we seen a leg down in core PC demand,’ said Rick Sherlund, an analyst with Nomura Securities. Windows 8 comes with an interface designed for tablets and laptop or desktop PCs that have touchscreens. It also works with a traditional keyboard and mouse. Some industry executives predict that consumers will take time to get used to touching laptop screens, just like displays on tablets and smartphones. But the new interface takes time to learn, analysts add, and touchscreens increase hardware prices. Also, many PC makers have yet to roll out a full complement of PCs and tablets with touchscreens. NPD found that touchscreen devices with Windows 8 sold well but made up just 6% of notebook sales at an average price of $867. Partly for that reason, average selling prices for Windows devices rose to $477 from $433 a year earlier, NPD said. That is good news for PC makers weary of consumers buying low-cost computers.”

Click the chart to read more from Jones and Ovide.

7 Replies to “How’s Windows 8 Doing After Its Launch?”

  1. Also it was mentioned in Wall Street Journal earlier this fall that due to the launch of the Microsoft Surface Microsoft had to break some of its contracts with HP and Dell who were using exclusively Windows software in their new PCs. Microsoft correctly predicted that these two companies have based their entire production on Microsoft software so even if they are not restricted with a contract they cannot move to a different developer both because of the quality of software they need and also because of the need to be compatible with their previous PCs.

  2. Windows 8 is a breakthrough that the PCs and laptops can use touch screens, but if that necessary for screen touching is an issue. When you use you mouse and keyboard, it may be inconvenient to raise the arm to operate on the screen. I’m not sure if the Window 8 is a customer oriented or engineer oriented.

  3. Windows 8 is a horrible operating system and making the consumer pay more for a PC is not going to help, touch screen or not. PCs cannot approach the cost of an Apple computer. Many corporations are not going to change to windows 8, as the only real difference is the home screen that is being marketed to the public. Corporations will not care if their employees are using touchscreens, in fact I would assume most wouldn’t want to pay more for touchscreens. I also know many companies, mine included, that are being built to run on Macs as they can work virus free and run like new for 10 years, which makes them a better investment. Companies switching to Macs is going to be a problem for PC makers and Microsoft in the years to come.

  4. i feel that windows problem is not the fact that their product is not of high quality, it is just too late. If windows wanted to make tons of money and have huge sales they would have come out with this product before apple came out with their ipad. Although technology is changing everyday business consumers and final consumers are happy with the products they already have. Too many people would choose apple products without even considering windows unless it was their very last option. Myself and many others grew up with the windows computers. The system is complicated and too messy for the world today. Unless windows modifies quickly and adapts to changes without just combining a touch screen and a PC, they will not be able to compete any longer.

  5. I agree with Michelle. Windows waited too long, and was not quick enough in entering the marketing. TIMING is what’s important. Samsung, and even blackberry were on the mark, making the playbook and galaxy etc. Even if they didn’t do as amazingly well as the iPad, they were within the timeframe to actually get some “wallet play”. Although I think the Windows 8 Idea is interesting and a good idea, I don’t think it is enough to change the consumers mind at this point. We see this time and time again, companies going out of business because they are reluctant or slow with change. I think the only way for Windows to make a comeback is to make a completely new niche for themselves. Make something we don’t even know we need yet, and make us need it.

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