Newsletter #389 Preview: Do Windows Users Really Love Windows?

May 14th, 2007

The other day, I had a brief exchange in a message board about operating system preferences and taste. The poster maintained that Windows is used on more than 90% of the world’s PC desktops because customers voted their preference, that they liked it better than all the rest.

Now I suppose it’s easy to reach that conclusion, based on the numbers alone, and the fact that Microsoft has held onto its dominance of the operating system market for many years. But the larger question is just how did Microsoft reach its vaunted position and on what basis do folks choose which PCs to buy?

Do you readers honestly believe that people select Windows after doing a genuine comparison with the Mac OS or other choices? How are such decisions made?

Well, I could deliver a few historical anecdotes about how Microsoft pulled a full bait and switch tactics, promising great things and, instead, delivering products that were, well, merely adequate? Or how Microsoft ran roughshod over other companies to attain its dominant position, finally confronting the Department of Justice dead on.

Story continued in this week’s Tech Night Owl Newsletter.

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6 Responses to “Newsletter #389 Preview: Do Windows Users Really Love Windows?”

  1. Ron Bannon says:

    The reason that Windows is on top has more to do with IBM than anything else. Fact is, there was a time when IBM was the de-facto name for computer, and Microsoft OS was the only OS that was called IBM compatible . . . END OF STORY.

  2. The reason that Windows is on top has more to do with IBM than anything else. Fact is, there was a time when IBM was the de-facto name for computer, and Microsoft OS was the only OS that was called IBM compatible . . . END OF STORY.

    This is, indeed, one factor. There were others in the years after other companies took massive sales of PCs from IBM.


  3. Marie Drovinsky says:

    Stupidity, ignorance and fear of change are what keep Windows drones leashed to the malware platform.

    The intelligent who actually compare and have any balls, switch to the Mac.

    If your devoid of discernment, lack any spine and gullible as a slug, you will get Windows whether you think you chose it or not.

    Every tech person I know has switched to the Mac in the past two years. Why tolerate crap Windows when you have a choice of using a Mac, they say. Sure they still run one or two partitions with Windows cause that’s how they get paid and need it to troubleshoot all day but come night their platform is the Mac. Every one swears they will NEVER go back. Many are now looking to change their careers to avoid all Windows contact going forward. Windows is dead all we’re waiting for is the stench to go away.

  4. DBL says:

    I have plenty of PC-using friends, and none of them love their computers. Oh, they’ll defend the product staunchly, even though I do not make a habit of attacking it — they are after all my friends. But the subject does of course come up, and their part of the debate almost wholly consists of trying to point out ways that the competition is “just as bad”. Which begs the question: just as bad as what? People who love their platforms do not make this kind of argument. Instead, they’ll argue that their platform is *better*. Which Windows users don’t generally do unless you specifically challenge them on this point. THEN they’ll try to think of something. They can come up with some good points, but overall, it isn’t very impressive even if you take them at their word. This is why they generally avoid this territory and prefer to try to shift the focus to the “just as bad” approach. Unfortunately, this too is an underwhelming argument that is usually chock full of FUD because PC users generally don’t know anything about other platforms, and therefore just accept what they are told.

    So … no. As a group — Windows users obviously do not love Windows. It’s very plain to anyone who talks to them.

  5. John Davis says:

    The comment I get about Windows from most WIndows users is “good enough.” In other words, they are satisfied with very little. They are satisfied with mediocrity.

    I’m pretty sure that the majority of Windows users haven’t a clue what system they are using. They just use the computer on the desk. Someone shows them how to input numbers into Excel or enter names in a database. They rarely change applications and they are just doing some kind of mechanical task.

    There’s another thing that kind of goes with this. We often hear the cry, “There is no software for the Mac.” There may well be more software for Windows, but most, I mean 99.9% of Windows users I know personally ONLY use the MS Office Suite, Word, Excel, etc.

    I would be very interested to know the “market share” of computer users who actually CHOOSE which system they use. We know that MOST Mac users fit into this category.

    Yours sincerely,

    John Davis

  6. torgeir says:

    i have worked with both platforms for many years in the graphic design/advertising industry, my office computer is a macbook pro running parallels, i use parallels for mail (outlook), MSN , usenet (gravity) and other office applications and i use os x for running adobe apps i also use os x when editing video because i think iMovie is a nice video editing app.
    my home computer is a pc running windows XP, i use this for anything not work related, private mail, internet surfing, msn, games and my photo collection, which is maintained by Adobe Elements 4 which i prefer over iPhoto.

    given a choice between two platforms i would choose windows over os x for both private and corporate use, the corporate bit is easy, active directory/group policies, ris, ssm etc. makes windows computers alot easier to install and maintain in a large environment….
    ofcourse you can struggle with ldap and stuff like that trying to get a seamless mac/windows environment controlled by a mac server……if only Apple made large enterprise server, which they dont…..and they dont seem very eager to enter the corporate market either.
    windows win hands down in the corporate environment.

    for private use i actually prefer windows, i think it just works better than os x on a day to day basis, and the integration between apps and os is better than os x, which sort of lives next to you applications, not together with them like in windows, i dont really think windows have bigger problems with stability than os x either, as long as you use your head things work just fine.

    my girlfriend is a graphic designer and photographer, and she hates os x, she thinks the whole user interface is cumbersome and it also lacks basic functions like previewing of various types of image files in the file browser.

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