Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 25th Feb 2009 10:17 UTC
Microsoft Microsoft's CEO Steve Ballmer had some interesting things to say yesterday about which companies Microsoft sees as its competitors in the client operating system space. You'd think Apple was their number one competitor - and you'd be wrong. Microsoft sees two other competitors as their primary adversaries.
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gustl
Member since:
2006-01-19

I would say, Microsoft has a problem because Linux simply cannot fail.

The licensing cost of Linux distibutions will always be zero, and it will become better and more user-friendly with every release.

As soon as Linux is coming pre-installed like on netbooks, a market share of 20 - 30% is currently achieveable.
With people growing up who are more and more used to free software, those numbers will rise. Microsoft can only hope to delay a large market share for Linux by hindering it's adoption by the big OEMs.

Microsoft's throwing out of XP licenses for netbooks is a clear sign that they understand what is at stake here.

Reply Parent Score: 7

Jon Dough Member since:
2005-11-30

As soon as Linux is coming pre-installed like on netbooks, a market share of 20 - 30% is currently achievable.


A GNU/Linux distro did come pre-loaded on netbooks. When the netbook manufacturers offered a choice between a GNU/Linux distro and a Microsoft OS, the vast majority of netbook buyers opted for the Microsoft OS. That indicates that pre-loading the OS doesn't guarantee market share.

Reply Parent Score: 2

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

"As soon as Linux is coming pre-installed like on netbooks, a market share of 20 - 30% is currently achievable.


A GNU/Linux distro did come pre-loaded on netbooks. When the netbook manufacturers offered a choice between a GNU/Linux distro and a Microsoft OS, the vast majority of netbook buyers opted for the Microsoft OS. That indicates that pre-loading the OS doesn't guarantee market share.
"

I think you might find that the truth is that XP Home and a full-featured Linux were seldom offered to consumers on the exact same hardware. In my country, there is barely any Linux offered to regular consumers at all ... and when it is offered, it is always on the very low end models only. Barely useable.

In my country, if you want OS choice, if you want a netbook with a proper full Linux pre-installed (not a tame one like Xandros), then you more-or-less have to go to an "independant supplier", such as this one:

http://www.liliputing.com/2009/02/australian-netbook-with-user-requ...
http://www.kogan.com.au/blog/2009/feb/17/what-do-you-want-see-kogan...

This nicely explains the apparent "choice" of XP Home on netbooks ... really it is due to no (commonly available) choice.

In the US, Dell offers its Mini Inspiron 9 (AFAIK) on the same hardware models as it offers XP Home. This is one of the few side-by-side comparable deals that is apparently commonly available to regular consumers. In this scenario, Linux accounts for a third of the units sold.

http://blog.laptopmag.com/one-third-of-dell-inspiron-mini-9s-sold-r...

Where there is a real choice of a decent Linux on the desktop offered, then 20% - 30% seems to be a quite achieveable goal.

Reply Parent Score: 4

spiderman Member since:
2008-10-23

What?
That must be in the US.
In my country, not many people choose to pay for Windows!
I look around me and most netbooks run linux. The phone companies sell the linux version, not the Windows one.
Some geeks who want windows for .. what for again? anyway some geeks do install a pirated version of windows on them, but I've hardly ever seen a netbook with windows on it.

Reply Parent Score: 1