Windows 7 – OS Jumping the Shark?

There are a lot of articles floating around about Windows 7.

One thing that’s apparent is that if you like Vista, you’ll feel very comfortable with Windows 7. In addition, looks like the “killer app” that’s included withWin7 is touch screen functionality.

Excuse me!?

Now I have no problems with touch screen functionality –  in some small-screen products (eg GPS) it’s the only way to enter data. Some dedicated terminals, such as ATMs, also make good use of it. But on my desk?

Has Microsoft learned nothing from the Vista experience?

Microsoft’s marketing strategy seems firmly ensconced in the “more-is-better” camp – give users more stuff and they will upgrade without hesitation, even if the upgrade will require more hefty hardware. In this case, you need a touch-screen.

So Vista requires multi-cores and 2 GB RAM to feel good; now Win7 needs all that plus a touch screen. Is there some secret agreement among hardware vendors and MS? Does MS get a royalty on every new PC sold? No, but it sure feels like it.

Maybe I’m just not with it; maybe I’m a fossil and just resistant to change.

But whatever happened to making a good operating system better? Better in the “it works better” sense rather than better in the “gee whiz gimmick” sense. I would rather pay something like $50-$75 for a better version of XP than a tricked out, bloated OS that puts more emphasis on glitz than functionality and improved performance.

One example: Some manufacturers are using linux as a means to cut down boot-up times to seconds rather than minutes. This appears to be a good example of a feature that has real user appeal. If MS were to include a fast-boot feature in an enhanced version of XP at a reasonable price, I’d jump at it.

Which makes me wonder how much user marketing MS does?

In another life, I spent a LOT of time doing product research to find product features that would be of particular interest to users; this involved things like marketing surveys and focus groups – touch-feely events where the focus was on understanding how users used a product, developing new features, testing them and then implementing the best.

Maybe MS is doing this, but I wonder what users they are talking to?MS people? I doubt many real-world users would warm to Vista knowing that it would cost more in hardware upgrades to use it. Now it seems to me I have to pay for an OS with touch-screen functionality that I doubt I’ll ever use, at least not near term.

The more MS imposes additional hardware costs on users, the more attractive Ubuntu looks.







About Joe Citarella 242 Articles
Joe Citarella was one of the founders of in 1998. He contributed as a site administrator and writer for over 10 years before retiring. Joe played an integral part in building and sustaining the community.

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