Windows 7: Beginning of the End of Traditional OS?

Ann All

Forrester Research and other analysts are predicting the forthcoming release of Windows 7 will be a win for Microsoft, because of a fortuitous combination of factors. Signs of an economic recovery may increase companies' willingness to open their checkbooks for IT upgrades. That's coupled with a strong need for such upgrades after years of delaying major purchases, plus the end of support for the popular Windows XP and positive word-of-mouth that Windows 7 won't be another Vista. (For a rundown of the new OS's features, be sure to check out this piece at our CTO Edge site.)

 

Forty-nine percent of North American and European respondents to a recent Forrester survey expect to migrate to Windows 7, though they don't yet have a specific time frame in mind. Another 10 percent will migrate to Windows 7, though not in the next 12 months, and 7 percent either had already begun migrating to the new OS or will do so in the next 12 months. Twenty-seven percent of respondents haven't yet evaluated Windows 7 and so are unsure of their plans. One percent are skipping Windows 7 and waiting for the next iteration of Windows, 1 percent will migrate from Windows to another OS, and 5 percent don't know.

 

So at least 65 percent of companies are planning a move to Windows 7. Yet the price of doing so may give at least some of them pause. According to Gartner, companies can expect to pay up to $1,930 per user to move from Windows XP to Windows 7. The cost is considerably less, $339 to $510 per seat, for those moving from Vista to Windows 7, but that's only a tiny sliver of companies.

 

A big chunk of Windows 7 migration costs involves testing, upgrading and replacing the applications installed on users' PCs. For each PC, Gartner says large enterprises can expect to pay $150 to upgrade apps and $200 to replace apps.

 

I wonder how many companies might seek to defray some of these costs by swapping at least some of their on-premise applications for those that run in a cloud environment? I tracked down a story from February in which the technology director of The Telegraph Media Group said the company's purchase of 1,400 seats of Google Apps for Premier Edition would be part of a move to a broader cloud computing model. He touted flexibility rather than cost, but I expect cost played into it. Perhaps the Windows 7 migration will prompt more companies to consider such a model.


 

As IT Business Edge's Mike Vizard wrote earlier today, economic necessity will prompt companies to consider putting even foundational back-office applications like ERP into the cloud. Just last week, I wrote about a podcast featuring Aneel Bhusri, co-CEO of Workday, a company some have posited could offer a legitimate cloud-based alternative to on-premise ERP systems.

 

More radically, virtualization and cloud computing could ultimately minimize the importance of the operating system.


Subscribe to our Newsletters

Sign up now and get the best business technology insights direct to your inbox.


 



Add Comment      Leave a comment on this blog post
Oct 20, 2009 5:12 AM New Orleans Computer Repair New Orleans Computer Repair  says:

Apple's doing fine. They don't need to worry about windows 7, it's Microsoft that needs to worry. Windows 7 simply is not a very good operating system.

Reply

Post a comment

 

 

 

 


(Maximum characters: 1200). You have 1200 characters left.

 

null
null

 

Subscribe to our Newsletters

Sign up now and get the best business technology insights direct to your inbox.


 
Subscribe to our Newsletters

Sign up now and get the best business technology insights direct to your inbox.