Is Windows 8 the end of the PC?
Fri, 26 Oct 2012 6:11p.m.
By Tom McRae
The end of the home computer is near after technology giant Microsoft today launched its latest operating system to compete directly with Apple.
Windows 8 features an all-new touchscreen system, described as the biggest step forward for the company in decades.
The stakes for Microsoft are incredibly high as it effectively shuts the door on the home computer.
“Best you start digging a hole in the back yard for your PC because it's gone - it's going to go,” technology commentator Steve Simms says.
The Windows 8 operating system is a dramatic shift towards more mobile devices and can be used on different platforms from different companies, Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer says.
“What we've done is actually re-imagined Windows and we've re-imagined essentially the whole PC industry in addition to notebooks and desktops, we introduced the PC as tablet, which I think will be phenomenal.”
And it better be as technology analysts say it's critical to Microsoft’s future.
“This is Microsoft’s big shot, they've got to get it right,” Mr Simms says. “They will get it right over time, but if they don't get it right then I’m afraid we're going to be seeing them in the history books.”
Microsoft were market leaders, but Apple soared after the release of the iPhone, and in 2010 overtook Microsoft in revenue. Last year Apple earned $37 billion more than Microsoft.
The Surface tablet was also released today, in the hope of stemming the tide.
Managing director of Microsoft New Zealand Paul Muckleston says the tablet will be very versatile.
“Apple's obviously done a fabulous job with the iPad, it's a fantastic device for consuming media. We think these devices allow you to consume media but also create work and access a lot of your business applications and all the other things you want to do as well.”
For years Microsoft has been seen by some as out of touch. Now the consumer can decide if it's imitation or innovation.
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6/01/2013 7:46:34 p.m.
Pfffft,i'd like to see gamers having to play graphic intensive games on their feeble ipads etc,power to the desktop pc,may it reign forever and its so much fun and satisfying to be able to make your own up.
28/10/2012 7:38:36 a.m.
The newer interface like that shown on iphones/ipads and now windows 8 is not a step forward.For many, its a step back.Eg the drag the screen sideways so can see more of the screen - was using similar back in 1994!Any serious user still wants a faster interface than can be given through likes of a keyboard/mouse. Why do serious gamers not like the game consoles? Because while 'Easy to Use' they are crap. Take a game released on PC and console, and turn the gaming aids off and you find the PC game players can accurately operate, while the console gamers crash and burn. The same thing for the popularity of this new interface, its slower and less usable. It make be nice for those who dont know what they are doing, but for everyone else, the more traditional interface still better in so many ways.Try typing/editing a reply here on the new interface without using a keyboard! Now try it with a keyboard! Information is still king over gimmicks, and the keyboard is still the best interface to put information into anything. Good work is being done with voice recognition, and till it is developed much further, then the keyboard will remain king for serious computing. Even the mouse is more precise than touch screens, so it too will remain due to the precision. Try using large fingers on an iphone - its a nightmare! as large fingers are just too large for precision, while put a mouse in a large hand and its a precision instrument.
27/10/2012 8:39:20 p.m.
By PC you mean desktop PC? And what do you mean by home computer? This whole article is very confusing. Windows 8 is simply an operating system that is compatible with tablet PC's as well as desktops and laptops. I have no doubt that many homes will do away with their desktops and laptops now windows works nicely on tablets. But theres still plenty of us for whom the desktop is king.
27/10/2012 7:43:14 p.m.
WOW windows 8 just seems like a no Brainer media player bit of a let down. My job is developing 3D models characters animals and environments. Not to mention alot of programming. Also if i and alot of other game developers don't have a PC with a keyboard and mouse we can not create the games you play. Do you think you can create things by swiping your finger across the screen :D This story does nothing to market windows 8 to me and possibly no other developer.
27/10/2012 4:34:05 p.m.
@Lars, you claim this article is wrong and a load of rubbish. You also ask that they get their facts right before reporting. Does that also apply to those leaving comments on such articles? You claim that no one has made a virus for the Mac computers, then you proceed to mention many viruses that have bought Mac computers to their knees. Which is correct? They can't both be right. Apple Mac computers are the number one selling desktop computers in the US alone. Forty percent of college and university students are using Mac computers. The flow on means, more and more desktop computers are becoming Mac computers and workplace computers are becoming Mac computers. Replacing the slumber some and slow Windows based junk. IPads and Mac computers are more costly than the windows based computers and tablets, but the long term running costs are minuscule compared to PC running costs, for instance, the new iOS operating system costs $25 nz as compared to the new windows8 operating system at $200-$300. Mac applications are mainly below nz $30 as compared to the high cost of windows apps. Windows operating systems have a huge habit for jamming, freezing and lagging. Mac computers just do as they are supposed to do, they just keep working.. Yes, hopefully the end of the PC is in sight. The sooner the better.
27/10/2012 12:15:40 p.m.
well said lars, on top of that if this article was true the gaming community would be outraged, i doubt any gamer would get windows 8, as far as i can see its a piece of rubbish having no real value to computers in general, and might just be the end of microsoft. lets see some real competition and get some good OS to come out
27/10/2012 6:09:29 a.m.
Money must grow on trees if people can afford tablets and laptops, mobile phones. I'm still using an old PC and it meets my needs.
26/10/2012 11:01:29 p.m.
I certainly hope the PC is not on the way out. Had a vodafone smartphone whose touch screen jammed and never recovered so would not like to part from the practical mouse and keyboard.
26/10/2012 8:17:24 p.m.
I seriously doubt the PC is finished. This is sensationalist journalism at its worst.
26/10/2012 7:54:36 p.m.
As a software engineer, this article is an embarrasment.
Please get your facts straight before writing whatever rubbish you think of.
While tablets are an increasing market, they are nowhere close to affecting the PC market. The desktop PC will never die because of it's use in businesses. Businesses aren't going to replace their powerful and versatile PCs with functionally retarded tablets, because nobody would get any work done on the unwieldly tablets. Windows 8 is by no means the death of the PC, it works beautifully on my Desktop I built and remains infinitely faster than that piece of junk ipad apple keeps releasing. Also please note that Microsoft isn't going anywhere, as a company's net worth has nothing to do with it's integration in businesses, it merely means that more brainless apple zombies threw money at overpriced products which apple profits more from. Windows still remains the single most used operating system in the world, and is on something like 85 - 90% of computers. Mac os is so rarely used, which is one of the key reasons everyone claims macs don't get viruses, because nobody bothers make them. When there is a virus on mac, it typically cripples the lot of them, and there have been quite a number of instances where macs have been brought to their knees because of some virus that Windows has learned to deal with, and does so effectively. Steve Simms was by and large the worst part of this. His lack of insight in the industry for a so-called "technology commentator" is deplorable. Implying that Microsoft is anything but a near-monopoly in the market is sheer insanity. when you have 85-90% of the market share of computers and you claim they're in trouble, you've clearly gone wrong somewhere. Please do not just pull whatever hipster wielding an iphone and ipad that you happen to find on the street and ask their opinions on tech, because they by and large know nothing, and only buy that rubbish because it's fasionable. For shame.
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