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Microsoft spending more than $1.5 billion on Windows 8 rollout

Analyst calls Microsoft's big launch "a big risk"

This October, Microsoft is going big with the launch of an entirely new ecosystem that includes Windows 8, Windows RT, Windows Phone 8, and the Microsoft Surface tablet. It's Microsoft's chance to succeed in a market increasingly dominated by Apple and Google's mobile operating systems. According to analyst Rob Enderle of the Enderle Group, the huge launch is a "big risk" for the Redmond giant.

"Windows is one of their pillars and pretty much the foundation for everything," Enderle told Forbes.

Microsoft is spending between $1.5 and $1.8 billion for the launch, a far cry from the $200 million spent on the Windows 95 launch.

"The marketing effort is on a scale you don't see outside presidential elections," Enderle added.

[Image Via The Register]

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Latest comments (13)

Keldon Alleyne Handheld Developer, Avasopht Ltd4 years ago
That all?

I do wonder what the objectives are here though and how much of that will go into each. Firstly they need to give people a reason to upgrade (I've still got no issues running XP), they would want to entice developers to target metro (especially for apps) and convince consumers there is great value in Windows RT devices.

I would imagine that they would benefit a great deal by nailing the discovery process. The better the economy the greater the indie developer support, which they would need to convert developer over from iOS (at least for Windows RT).

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Keldon Alleyne on 13th October 2012 2:24am

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Key issue for me is still corporate, and potentially how much support they could lose from this. The (large, multinational) I work for will not be upgrading to W8, despite automatically using/upgrading to all previous Windows editions. In addition, we are now designing our client software to be ex-Windows proof, allowing us to easily switch to any platform/OS.

I doubt I'll ever run W8 at home (still on XP) - if anything, we'll switch to iOS/Android for PC "desktop".
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Greg Wilcox Creator, Destroy All Fanboys! 4 years ago
I'm still using XP as well because it works best over Vista and 7 for my ancient games. W8 interests me not one bit because of all the seemingly mandatory touch-happy stuff I don't care for and all that visual flashiness I don't need at all.
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Show all comments (13)
Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.4 years ago
I have Win 7 and Linux on dual boot with Win 8 in a virtual machine....and it will stay in the virtual environment no matter how much they spend on marketing.
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Josh Meier4 years ago
I currently run Windows 7 on my desktop and laptop.I have no intention of upgrading to Windows 8 even when I eventually build a new gaming computer.

I have no reason to upgrade, as I feel that Windows 7 is perfect for what I do.
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Adrian Herber4 years ago
Although I think the Desktop/Metro split in Windows 8 is going to be troublesome for many people, the features of Windows 8 actually suit me for my software development workflow even better than Windows 7. Probably something to do with how I've hated the start menu since XP and I've been replacing it with other options for years - most recently with XLaunchPad which is not that different to the Windows 8 Start Screen.
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Bruce Everiss Marketing Consultant 4 years ago
This is an utterly magnificent and vitally important event in the history of our industry. This is like the flight of the first jet aircraft.
Microsoft are taking a huge risk in bringing the world a huge leap in the way we handle all sorts of information and activities. If they succeed then what we do will never be the same again.
And I bet they spend a lot more. For instance supporting Nokia with their Winphone 8 handsets.
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Dan Howdle Head of Content, Existent4 years ago
This is like the flight of the first jet aircraft.
Or when they printed 'New Improved Recipe!' on cans of Whiskers.
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Rick Lopez Illustrator, Graphic Designer 4 years ago
It seems to me the Metro interface, is set to phase out the old interface, much like OSX faced out OS9(classic) on the MAC. I think microsoft wants to get rid of the open enviroment in favor of one that is closed and will allow them more control. It works on XBOX live. I think its a matter of time before metro overtakes the old interface, and all microsoft has to do is provide less and less support for it over time. Very much the same strategy Apple used for OS9 and OSX. So yeah, game developers have a reason to be pissed off.
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Peter Dwyer Games Designer/Developer 4 years ago
Has anyone here aside from me actually bothered to use Windows 8?

Only the RT tablet version is in any way closed in any way shape or form. This is as I would expect it to be as tablet users don't want to have an open environment. this has already been proven in the earlier attempts to make windows tablets. People simply didn't buy them because they were too difficult to use. Apple have proven (and you can't go backwards in time people) that we want simple and functional from our tablets not complicated and difficult.

I'll be grabbing a surface when they come out and expecting to make app store style apps as well. If I want to run a AAA memory hungry 7gb game I'm not going to be trying to run that on a 32GB battery powered tablet now am I. For that I'd still need my desktop pc! Windows 8 desktop will run such games just fine so where is this so called closed system?
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Tom Hunt Game Developer, neocade4 years ago
>tablet users don't want to have an open environment.
I know a number of satisfied Android users who would beg to differ with this statement.

>this has already been proven in the earlier attempts to make windows tablets.
Mmm, no, not really. What was proven was that expensive 3+ lb tablets with crappy touch latency are not particularly desirable consumer products (duh), especially when held up next to a 1.5 lb tablet with pretty decent touch latency that costs about half as much. That was almost 3 years ago, and only now do they (possibly) have something even remotely competitive on those terms.

> Windows 8 desktop will run such games just fine so where is this so called closed system?
Try finding Grand Theft Auto (or anything with a lot of swearing or graphic violence or otherwise "illegal activity" in it) on your Windows RT tablet and get back to me on that one.
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Chris Nash QA Engineer 4 years ago
Like Vista, there's been a wave of negative opinion directed towards W8 from people within the tech community which, I think, Microsoft will be hard pressed to dispel easily. They've really got to sell W8 on what it does better than W7, which to many powerusers and corporate clients is "nothing relevant to me/my business". Windows 7 remains a very solid and stable operating system and will continue to do so for years to come - so Microsoft will be in the awkward position of having to devalue or destroy the reputation of W7 in a vain attempt to get people to switch.

It's either that or rely on OEM installations and target the hardware, which they did in their recent "PC shop in your living room" ad campaigns where the folks acting in them claimed that their four-year-old XP/Vista box was "outdated" and "slow" compared to the wonders of Windows 7. Not remotely convincing to anyone but "casual" users, who admittedly were the focus of that campaign.
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Peter Dwyer Games Designer/Developer 4 years ago
@Tom

Yes there are a lot of android tablet users but, what has that got to do with open environments? Last time I looked they all get their apps from the Google play Store. Very few users actually root their tablets to use non-play store apps. I'm also pretty certain that tablets didn't take off until the iPad and it's simple "just turn on and touch the app you want to use" functionality came along.

"Try finding Grand Theft Auto (or anything with a lot of swearing or graphic violence or otherwise "illegal activity" in it) on your Windows RT tablet and get back to me on that one." What has that got to do with windows 8 desktop? You just deliberately ignored what I said to try to make in invalid point. Why?

I'm sorry but, from what I'm reading here it seems to be a lot of people saying thigs without ever actually using either Desktop Windows 8 or windows 8 RT. I expected much better from my peers, especially as you should be thinking for yourselves not jumping on band wagons simply because a few people (we seem to actually be openly bias towards apple) are trying to shoot down windows 8.
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