Originally Posted by SolipsismX
Look at what he wrote. He made no mention of MS's current revenue being low.nor then conclude they will not be successful next year because it is low. He very clearly started that next year many things, in his opinion, could hinder MS. He included a listed and used the would "could" not "would". There is absolutely nothing in his post that deserves your response.
I've been using Win8 an WinServ2012. I've used WinPh7 and read quite abit about WinPh8 and the Surface. I quite like what they are doing with Win phone and the underlying system of Win desktop but they aren''t gaining traction in the phone dept., doubtful they will make a splash with the Surface or with WIn8 on tablets, and their desktop OS is cumbersome and confusing for a userbase that widely doesn't understand computers and doesn't like change.
My company still uses WinXP for desktops. Vista made a lot of companies scared to change. Win7 is a great upgrade over WinXP but the damage was done. Win8 might be better than Vista on resources but the UI is too much of a radical change that I don't think it will be received well. "If you'll have to relearn how to use a PC OS UI I might as well just get a Mac " is something I expect many people to say to themselves.
Now, I'm quite a fan of MS server OSes. They are simply the best, bar none. This is where their revenue and profits come from. This won't be changing for a long time but if they lose the consumer they will eventually lose that extra barrier of defense if a better enterprise solution comes along. Why does this speculation of a simple chain of events bother you to the point that you have to mention their quarterly revenue that has nothing to do with their collapsing consumer hold?
It just reminded me of negative posts about Apple going down because new XYZ product is not good enough, hasn't got enough new features, looks too much like previous generation, yara-yara-yara... to which some smartass usually responds with good old "Apple is doomed (tm)".
So I guess it was my turn to be a smartass. Very indulging experience.
But seriously; every year can hinder everyone. Every release of new product carry some risk that, for whatever (un)forseen reason, product will not be well received. Be it a Start Screen, Maps or anything else. Or everything else.
MS bread & butter is volume licensing. I don't think anything relevant will change there. Regardless of how many customers will opt to use downgrade rights (and keep Windows 7), MS will be selling Windows 8 licenses as any other desktop licenses before. On server side, their products are less risky and have some great benefits (like Hyper-V's availability of GUI), so I don't think business will change there at all. All of our big customers (though most of them would be considered small or, on a shiny day, mid-size somewhere else in the world) have volume licensing agreements with software assurance, which gives MS great peace of mind regardless of how many of these users actually decide to upgrade to Win 8 or not. In addition, most of them replace their hardware based on SLA's they have, and based on support/maintenance they have from hardware vendors. Be it on 3, 4 or 5 year hardware refresh plan, it happens regardless of MS (but they do get new hardware with MS OEM licenses, regardless of having VL for desktop OS or not).
And no, I don't think people - companies, at least - can just get a Mac. Because companies still depend on their software, much of which is legacy or does not exist outside of Windows ecosystem. And then, companies would have to replace their hardware, their IT support departments (or outsourced support companies), likely change your central management system (like Kaseya) - and still get to train their staff not only to use new OS and new hardware, but also all the apps that are not the same as those they would just carry over from old to new Windows desktops. Replacing one component, like desktop OS, still isn't as logistically challenging as replacing pretty much everything, including desktop OS.
On consumer side, I can see possibility of bigger fluctuations, but I'm not expecting them. People seem to buy new PC when they need one, not when MS releases new OS I don't think that this trend would change in any meaningful way regardless of how well new Windows is received or not. Enthusiasts might opt to upgrade (or not), but they are minority to corporate and more casual users. They will have to balance their (dis)liking of new GUI with improvements related to DirectX and other things important to them, from case to case. Yes, some consumers might decide to move to Mac, but again - they are facing same problem of having to learn new OS anyway, plus replace some of the software they already might have (and can keep using without extra investment).
Real question is, will MS manage to achieve any significant success with their mobile efforts or not. However, they don't have much to lose here, considering how irrelevant they currently are. Plus, their mobile effort doesn't look bad at all.
Based on all that - and yes, it is only my opinion, though reasonably well educated - MS will have financial 2013 comparable to their 2012, if they fail to break into smartphones and tablets. If they do, however, their 2013 might end up being better than 2012. Even if 2012 wasn't bad at all.