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Windows 8 marketing fiasco worst in 28 years


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Microsoft is preparing to reverse course over key elements of its Windows 8 operating system, marking one of the most prominent admissions of failure for a new mass-market consumer product since Coca-Cola’s New Coke fiasco nearly 30 years ago.

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Microsoft is preparing to reverse course over key elements of its Windows 8 operating system, marking one of the most prominent admissions of failure for a new mass-market consumer product since Coca-Cola’s New Coke fiasco nearly 30 years ago.

“Key aspects” of how the software is used will be changed when Microsoft releases an updated version of the operating system this year, Tami Reller, head of marketing and finance for the Windows business, said in an interview with the Financial Times. Referring to difficulties many users have had with mastering the software, she added: “The learning curve is definitely real.”

Analysts warned that changing course would be a significant admission of failure for Steve Ballmer, chief executive, who called the October launch of Windows 8 a “bet-the-company” moment as Microsoft sought to respond to the success of Apple’s iPad.

“It’s a horrible thing for this to happen to your flagship product – he’ll take a hit for that,” said Mark Anderson, an independent tech analyst. “But he’s also responsible for a renaissance inside the company. There’s a level of risk and creativity going on that would never have happened two years ago.”

Richard Doherty, analyst at tech research firm Envisioneering, said: “This is like New Coke, going on for seven months – only Coke listened better.” Coca-Cola dropped its New Coke formula in response to a consumer backlash less than three months after launch.

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Windows 8 was an ambitious attempt to update the personal computer for the tablet era by moving to a new touchscreen interface based on colourful tiles, hiding the “desktop” launch screen familiar to white collar workers and consumers around the world.

The combination PC and tablet software was widely panned by reviewers and has been blamed by some analysts for worsening the slump in sales that has rocked the PC industry. Even before its launch, Tim Cook, chief executive of Apple, said Windows 8 would be like combining a toaster and a fridge – something that, while technically possible, was “probably not going to be pleasing to the user”.

Ms Reller refused to reveal details of the changes Microsoft would make to Windows 8. However, the clamour from reviewers has become overwhelming for a return to a more familiar PC interface. Ms Reller said PC users had faced difficulties adapting to the new software.

Pressure has been building for Windows 8 PCs to launch the familiar desktop view when turned on – and to bring back the “start” button featured in the lower left corner of the screen in previous releases.

Microsoft has also admitted to a range of other slips with the launch of Windows 8, including failing to do enough to train retail staff and educate potential customers about the new software, as well as not focusing all of its financial incentives behind the touchscreen PCs that show off Windows 8 to best advantage. “It’s very clear we could and should have done more,” Ms Reller said.

Despite the slips, she said that Microsoft continued to view the software as suitable for both PCs and tablets and that “customer satisfaction with Windows 8 with touch is strong”.

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Typical business response to their own monumental cockup... blame someone else... it's the clueless customers' fault for being too stupid to use it...

Couldn't possibly have been your brilliant decision to make a one-size-fits-all OS eh Microsoft?

Does Apple use iOS on their desktop and laptop PC's? Nope...

Does Apple use Mac OS X on their iGadgets? Nope...

Does Google push Android for desktops and laptop PC's? Nope...

Who's really too stupid Microsoft?

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the thing is that there is no learning curve. it's not about being dificult, it's about being intrusive and not bringing anything to the table other than a bunch of huge ugly colorful squares that can't even be modified, in a self contained full screen environment...nobody needs a full screen clock or weather forecast..but the most annoying insult to pc users is that it places them at the same level as a cellphone user regardless of screen size or computing power. (so the future is lackluster html apps?) people expect much more than that. another thing: have you tried using multiple screens? perhaps an SLI setup? well, don't bother. Windows 8 is not for the power user.

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Does Google push Android for desktops and laptop PC's? Nope...

ummmm... yes

www.andriodx86.com and Ubuntu is making a piggyback OS for the same andriods to use in docking stations

Android is Linux based, uses the same kernel as Ubuntu.

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Thing is, Apple wants to merge iOS with MacOS and Google wants to merge Android with Chrome OS. However, I should note that both the things have their aims before Windows 8 was even announced or rumoured. Now the situation is, Apple is not doing any inwards with the iOS and Mac OS merger and Google had recently specified that only few good things from Chrome OS will be added to Android, and they may not merge them.

Even if both Google and Apple merge their own respective products into one, I'm sure they will have a better transition, strategy and care for consumers than Microsoft at the moment.

*Oh, Microsoft is doing so great by hearing it's consumers and making positive changes in Windows Blue.* No sh*t. Cause, one, where was all the care for customer feedback when people were going mad before Windows 8 released? It took you biggest failure in 30 years to give you some sense to hear to your customers? This how ignorant and idiotic company you are? And two, Microsoft is just fooling everyone by bringing back the Start Button, even with re-sizable tiles and changeable background, Metro is BS and will remain BS. We want Start Menu back as an option, why not best of both worlds?

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Steve Ballmer should be SACKED. Its as simple as that. How do you have any business acumen when you dropped out of Stanford Graduate School of Business to join Microsoft.

No wonder he has no respect for the business part of Microsoft. Big mistake from Bill Gates for hiring him because thy went to Harvard together.

Windows 8 will fail if Microsoft doesn't change the way they do things.

If you really go deep into Windows or Work as a Systems Administrator, you will not be surprised by what's going on with Windows 8.

There so many fiasco's when it comes to Microsoft Products. Too many tools and ways to do the same thing with some methods totally unusable and lacking any real solutions.

Its a real Juggling act to be a Windows Systems Administrator and this has only now just been taken public via Windows 8.

MICROSOFT SHOULD JUST LISTEN TO CONSUMERS AND STOP MOCKING AROUND. THEY ARE BOUND TO GO DOWN SOMEDAY ANYWAY

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its time for a change dear Steve Ballmer OR you will run out of Job soon :P

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ummmm... yes

Ooops... my bad, should have checked... :)

My point was that Apple, and love or hate them they are bloody good at UI design, would have already agonised over whether a common UI for all things Apple would make sense.

Microsoft's goof was thinking they knew better and so forced desktop users to boot into a UI that's really only superior on touch UI devices, without giving those users a choice to boot into a traditional desktop UI.

Even if my desktop's monitor was capable of being tapped, swiped, pinched... that's nowhere as user-friendly as the mouse/keyboard UI.

And to be fair, I'd equally hate the mouse/keyboard UI on my iPad.

Specificity beats generality nearly every time.

Will be happy to try Windows 8 when Microsoft understands that a desktop isn't a tablet, any more than a car is a bicycle. :)

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the thing is that there is no learning curve. it's not about being dificult, it's about being intrusive and not bringing anything to the table other than a bunch of huge ugly colorful squares that can't even be modified, in a self contained full screen environment...nobody needs a full screen clock or weather forecast..but the most annoying insult to pc users is that it places them at the same level as a cellphone user regardless of screen size or computing power. (so the future is lackluster html apps?) people expect much more than that. another thing: have you tried using multiple screens? perhaps an SLI setup? well, don't bother. Windows 8 is not for the power user.

+ 1

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DesiPirate

So the party time is over and blame time has started.....poor windows 8 :lol:

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Windows 8 marketing fiasco worst in 28 years

Somebody seems to have goofed up with that article - it's not a marketing fiasco (it's a designing blunder - just like this article.)

Microsoft screwed up in the development stage of Windows 8 - the marketing part plays no fault in that (in fact, the marketing is the only redeemed side of the whole Windows 8 story . . . . . . . . . . considering the last 28 years.)

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