Sunday, April 14, 2013
Erasing Windows 8?
I suppose one can’t read too much into a single ad, but I noticed that the OfficeMax ad bundled into today’s Star-Advertiser had deleted screen images of Windows 8 – from each of the computers inside as well as on the front page of the ad.
Can a bleak, dark screen actually sell more computers than one with a Windows 8 home screen?
Could this be a new strategy? Speaking for myself, I find the two tablets pictured behind the laptop to be more appealing than the laptop would have been even with the large and comparatively primitive-looking Windows 8 icons. Having become used to the simulated computer screens in ads, I find the blank screen rather off-putting.
Sales of desktop PCs have suffered due to the popularity of tablets and smartphones, but many jobs still require the horsepower and compatibility of the Microsoft/Intel architecture. But Windows 8 may not be what users want. In fact, there are several discussions which Google will find for you explaining that it is possible to downgrade a new machine from Windows 8 to Windows 7. Here’s one. And for those who want the start button back, there are programs that restore it to Windows 8.
The blank images could be for a different reason, but let’s see if retailers begin to downplay Windows 8. The new operating system may actually be hurting sales.
Global PC sales tumbled 14% in the first quarter of 2013, the biggest slide since US research firm IDC began tracking the industry in 1994. The poor consumer response to Microsoft's Windows 8 operating system, contributed to the plunge.
IDC said 76.3m units were shipped as tablets such as Apple's iPad and smartphones cannibalise PC sales.
The firm said Microsoft's latest version of Windows had failed to revitalise the industry. This is bad news for the software giant.
Microsoft's operating system is used on most of the of the world's PCs and it launched Windows 8 last autumn which was a completely overhauled version with touch-screen capabilities.
However, IDC said Windows 8 hasn't only failed to boost PC demand but has actually contributed to the slowdown - - confusing consumers with features that don't improve in a tablet mode and compromise the traditional PC experience.
[FinFacts Ireland, Global PC sales tumbled in Q1 2013; Poor response to Windows 8 contributed to plunge, 4/11/2013]
That is such an interesting observation! I would have just accepted that the comps were off and never read more into it...but I think you're right.