Honan: Why Windows Just Can’t Win

Mat Honan, always a good read, has issues with Microsoft’s forthcoming Windows 8 OS. I’m genuinely bummed.

The new “Windows 8 style UI,” nee Metro, looks great. Microsoft’s decisive move putting mobile on equal footing with desktop is a winner, if a bit me-too-ish. But they’ve muddied the waters by holding over the classic Windows desktop, trying to be all things to all users.

I hope Microsoft doesn’t blow it this month. There’s room in the market for three mobile competitors. Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android are one and two. Microsoft can swim to number three or sink, making way for Amazon’s cash machine-Kindle tablets to capture that position.

Used to be, a new Microsoft OS was a guaranteed win. Then came Vista. That was my and many others’ reason to jump to a Mac, or Linux. Windows 7 was a solid product, though the last of its kind: a Microsoft desktop-centric OS. Windows 8 is a very different beast, one with a learning curve. Mat Honan thinks it’s out of the gate with a handicap.

What do you think will happen?