Windows Vista Professional Released Today

This only means something if you are a volume customer with Microsoft, if you buy licenses in bulk, you can start to get Windows Vista today. For the rest of us, January 30th 2007 is the date. May as well be the date for businesses too I would say, Windows XP has been the best operating system to ever come from Microsoft and few, if any will adopt it in bulk, but there will probably be some testers, like the IT guys who will want a copy to play with and get used to before they have to start supporting it, or maybe some of the upper level guys who want to test stuff before deploying, but for the most part, I would say most businesses will upgrade when they replace their pc’s. At least, that is how I would do it, small groups to start, hopefully some of your more “techie” employees.

Microsoft and computer vendors contend that Vista will make Windows machines more secure, powerful and graphically dynamic, especially when combined with other products Microsoft is releasing simultaneously. Those include new back-end server software for businesses, as well as Office 2007, which brings sweeping changes to widely used programs such as Word, Outlook, Excel and PowerPoint.

But even with all the touted improvements, analysts expect Vista to only gradually emerge, especially in big organizations where upgrading can be a costly, complicated affair. Gartner Dataquest predicts that it will be 2010 before Vista outnumbers the previous operating system, Windows XP, on business computers. Source: AP on Yahoo

In the article, Lenovo says Vista will help their data backup tools, and the article sites the availability of many open source replacements for Vista and Office, but I don’t think any of those tools are ready to put much of a dent among anyone other than highly technical users. A USAToday article on Yahoo says,

The dual launch of Windows Vista and Office is among the most significant by Microsoft in years. The Windows and Office product lines are the software maker’s most profitable, accounting for about half of its $10.8 billion in first-quarter revenue. But neither has had a major upgrade in years. For Microsoft to maintain its cash cows, it is imperative that it persuade a large swath of the hundreds of millions of current Windows and Office users worldwide to shift to the new versions, software analysts say.

“For a fat man, Vista is pretty light on its feet,” says Roger Kay, president of Endpoint Technologies Associates, a market research firm that tested Vista. “Even though it is larger and more powerful than XP, it runs better.”

“Most consumers follow the same path: They buy computers when old ones break, when prices come down, or when a lifestyle event triggers the purchase,” Schadler says. Source: USAToday on Yahoo

That’s a good quote, and while Vista may be a lot better than XP, the old saying, if it ain’t broke don’t fix it comes to mind. Microsoft still predicts that this OS will be adapted faster than any other they have had and they expect to sell 2 million copies in the first two years. But, like we’ve said, XP is it’s biggest block to upgrading. Maybe Microsoft should make an interim version of Vista that sucks, like ME did, so it will be easier to get users to upgrade from, hehe, talk about reversal of what you are doing. Who would’ve thought that making better software would make it harder to sell your new stuff.

According to PCWorld, Japan is high on upgrading and may be some of the earliest adopters,

Microsoft Japan has 57 companies that have said they’ll roll out at least one of the three products. The list includes Sharp, Sanyo Electric, McDonalds Holdings Company (Japan), Nikon, Chubu Electric Power, computer game maker Capcom, and trading company Itochu.

Interest from potential users in Japan has been high, according to Huston. Of 5 million downloads and 1 billion user sessions conducted as part of the beta testing for Windows Vista, about 20 percent have been by users in Japan. The country accounts for about 10 percent of the global IT market.

Speaking in Tokyo, Jay Jamison, leader of Microsoft’s Windows business group in Japan, said, “We are hopeful and optimistic that in Japan Windows Vista will be the most successful business OS release of Windows ever.” Source: PCWorld on Yahoo

Later on today, Microsoft will be holding launch events in Munich, London, Paris, Toronto, and New York, to name a few. Hope I can get my free copy of Windows Vista ordered today.

Microsoft has released a press release on their detailing when and how you can watch replays of the webcast of the news conference. News conference at NASDAQ also marks Microsoft?s 20th year as a publicly traded company.

What: Microsoft Corp. will host a news conference and live webcast to announce the availability of the Windows Vista operating system, the 2007 Microsoft? Office system and Exchange Server 2007 for business customers with volume license agreements. Microsoft Chief Executive Officer Steve Ballmer will celebrate this historic product launch, which coincides with Microsoft?s 20th year as a publicly traded company, by ringing the bell to open the NASDAQ market.

Who: Steve Ballmer, CEO of Microsoft, Chris Liddell, CFO of Microsoft, and executives from Microsoft customer and industry partner companies

Where: NASDAQ MarketSite event at Times Square in New York, 43rd St. and Broadway; a live webcast of the news conference will be available. Source: Microsoft CEO to Kick Off Launch of New Windows, Office, Exchange Products

According to a post on the Windows Vista Team Blog, they have created a virtual launch site, MSnewday, this site has links to the launch keynote, videos of the Microsoft executives, a Partner Showcase illustrating how other companies are preparing for deployment, live footage from the event being held at NASDAQ in NYC, and a forum for discussing business value. Check it out.