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 Post subject: What if: XP, Inc. vs Vista, Inc.
PostPosted: Sat Sep 22, 2007 8:52 am 
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Here's a thought -- albeit a wildly speculative one. Microsoft is having a larger than usually large amount of difficulty getting the world to adopt its new OS, Windows Vista, and migrate away from its old offering, Windows XP. Here's the speculative bit: what would happen if Microsoft were broken up into two companies at this point -- one left with the duty of maintaining Windows XP, and the other left with Windows Vista. Assume also that their flagship Office suite were similarly divided, so that the existing XP-tuned product stayed with the XP company, and the more recent development work went to the new.

What would happen?

Which one would Bill Gates want to run?


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 27, 2007 3:16 am 
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All I know is that the reason I am disinclined to migrate to Vista is because of my experience of migrating from '98 to Millennium Edition. I think a lot of people remember that era and are afraid to repeat the same mistake. I would be more inclined to go for something like "XP (insert something clever here)" version.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 27, 2007 3:13 pm 
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I heard one wag describe Vista as "XP, Millennium Edition".

My major thrust here, though, is to question what would happen if Vista were required to compete with XP, rather than Microsoft just arbitrarily retiring XP when they want to push Vista. One of the barriers to competition in the marketplace is software compatibility: migrating away from Windows isn't possible in many cases because the desired applications aren't available on any other platform. Breaking Microsoft into two companies along these lines would be a viable path (conceptually, at least) to recreating competition in the marketplace.

If Vista had to compete against XP on its own merits (with on-going support and availability of XP), how much of the market would it get? I'm really not sure what Gates would do under these circumstances -- other than be thoroughly enraged by the situation.


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 27, 2007 9:46 pm 
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TFBW wrote:
I heard one wag describe Vista as "XP, Millennium Edition".
:lol:

It would be an interesting dynamic. I know Vista is supposed to be more compatible with the new upcoming Phoenix Core Managed Environment (cME) standards-based grid computing system. Microsoft has been working closely with many other companies to develop the standards for the grid system for years now. This gives Vista an automatic leg-up from certain governments and security information brokers. This along with the rumors that Microsoft is poised to launch into the world of communications satellites makes me think there is more to Vista than meets the eye, but that could just be a latent predisposition to conspiracy paranoia cropping up.

On the other hand, Microsoft seems to be legally constrained from bundling software with Vista the way they have in the past with all other OS's.

It's hard to say, but my best guess is Gates would have gone with XP if he was presented with this scenario as his only options a few years ago. Today, I think he would run with Vista.

As far as market share goes, I think an XP upgrade would have won out.

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