“The time of worry is over” says Microsoft, according to MS expert Mary-Jo Foley on ZDNet. No, “the pain spreads to all” starts now says me, based on all my previous experience watching Microsoft move to control a new area. Microsoft tried to be polite about their new under-performing Vista operating system, but now the gloves are off and they’re cramming it down our throats, no matter what.
XP support, while officially continuing, has been getting blasted in various places because the commitment to support XP customers seems to be completely gone. The latest, and most detailed account I’ve read lately came from InfoWorld’s Ed Foster and his report on “The Suspicious Death of XP.”
Of course, there’s nothing suspicious about it at all. Microsoft holds all the cards and now they’re taking the huge stack of chips sitting on the operating system table. They will force us to Vista every way possible. First they stopped allowing hardware manufacturers to sell XP on new systems, forcing Vista on customers buying new PCs. Now they’re making support so painful many XP holdouts will give up and switch, or buy a new PC with Vista.
I’m afraid Microsoft under Steve Ballmer may be more aggressive and hurl more of its weight around than ever before. The way they’ve handled the Vista rollout shows nothing but arrogance about what customers want and when they want to buy it. Of course, all customers want is a good operating system that’s a real upgrade from XP. Too bad Vista fails in that regard.
We may have to switch from XP to Vista, but we don’t have to like it. And we don’t have to do it quietly.