Windows 7.0 Release Candidate Coming – Already Out On Torrents
It looks like Microsoft has every intention of releasing Windows 7.0 in time for the Christmas holiday shopping season this year. While that means December for you and me, it means something closer to September or October for retailers who build and ship their PCs into the channel long before the arrive in the store. (It takes a long time for a cargo ship to get to America from China / Malaysia / Korea / Whatever Asian Country Built The PC.)
In order to make that happen, Microsoft is pushing out a Release Candidate, often referred to by the initials RC, at the end of April or beginning of May, depending on whether or not you are a MSDN subscriber.
I still think that improving Vista and releasing a Version 2.0 was the better strategic route, but Microsoft no doubt hopes to put the bad taste left in people’s mouth by Vista behind it and move forward with the shiny unsullied Windows brand name. Will that move pay off?
The answer depends on how Windows 7.0 performs. As predicted, out of the gate, Windows 7.0 is getting the kid gloves treatment from legions of technical reporters and online resources like bloggers and tech sites. For these pundits, comparisons to Vista need to be favorable in order to maintain the notion that Vista was severely flawed, and perhaps even not ready when it was released. By praising Windows 7.0 they can all say, “See, we told you. This is what Vista should have been in the first place,” which of course is hogwash considering the monumental leaps in technology and hardware made since the release of Vista which are incorporated within Windows 7.0.
However, the honeymoon will be short lived if average users and businesses can’t find a compelling reason to voluntarily upgrade to 7.0. If the only reason to move to the new OS is the ending support for Windows XP, Microsoft can expect a slow simmering backlash to grow without the help of the blogosphere. However, eventually, the criticism will start flowing again, and this time, there is no bailout strategy.
After pouring all of its resources into the super-fast launch of Windows 7.0, Microsoft’s bag of tricks will be empty with Windows 8.0 or whatever a least a couple of years away. The difference this time is that Windows XP will not be there to prop the company up while it fumbles about for a new strategy. The reviled Vista plus a blundered Windows 7.0 would be the worst possible outcome for the boys at Redmond.
Let’s hope it doesn’t come to that.