Phil Sim

Web, media, PR and… footy

Will 3 years be too long for a Web-meshed OS?

News leaking out from Microsoft about the next version of Windows – to be called Windows 7 internally – which is due out in three years.

One of the highest-trafficked posts I’ve ever written on this site was this piece – Abandon Vista. We don’t need another desktop OS -about the need for a very-different operation system to what is installed on our computers today. Indeed, from what I’ve read about Parakey, this is much more up-the-alley of where I believe the desktop needs to be positioned – as a device truly meshed with the Internet where online/offline is a seamless experience.

This quote from the slides talking about Windows 7 lead me to believe that Microsoft is thinking in this director:

“deliver value beyond the OS including subscription offerings.”

To me, a Web-meshed OS provides such obvious ways for Microsoft to make money via these value-added services like online storage and backup,  advertising and web apps, all of which are ripe for the subscription model that Microsoft has longed for. Microsoft through its legacy on the desktop has the potential to be able to create a better seamless experience between the PC and the internet than any other company, but the fact that its talking about a three-year window to its next major release to me is quite incredible.

In three-years the game will be over. If Microsoft doesn’t deliver this seamless experience sooner than that, someone else, like Facebook and Parakey will. And at that point, the operating system underneath the “Web OS” isn’t going to matter here not there.

Microsoft probably thinks it can patch up Vista along the way to do some of this stuff and clearly Silverlight and other initiatives indicate that Microsoft are aware of the need to go in this direction. However, like all companies with legacies to look after I can’t help wonder that if we’re dealing with hacking Vista – that somebody else with a whole lot more focus is going to do it a whole heap better.

Filed under: AJAX Challenge

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