Newsletters
Technology, Discovery & Innovation NewsFactor Sites:       NewsFactor.com     Enterprise Security Today     CRM Daily     Business Report     Sci-Tech Today  
   
This ad will display for the next 20 seconds. Please click for more information, or scroll down to pass the ad, or Close Ad.
Home Computing Digital Life Discovery Space More Topics...
Eliminate costly downtime!
Find out how with Free White Paper
& enter to win a Samsung Galaxy Note

www.apc.com
Microsoft/Windows
Average Rating:
Rate this article:  
Will Microsoft
Will Microsoft's OEM Soap Opera End with Windows 7?

By Jennifer LeClaire
August 17, 2009 2:24PM

Bookmark and Share
As the Windows 7 rollout nears, Microsoft's prickly relationship with OEMs is in the spotlight. OEMs have long complained about Microsoft's pricing, but with Windows 7, Microsoft has made clear efforts to treat OEMs more like partners with both Windows 7 development and Microsoft's retail operations. OEM-Microsoft infighting may subside.
 



Tech news headlines abound around Windows 7. Some are looking at the improvements. Others are looking at Microsoft's past mistakes with Vista. Still others are looking at how to upgrade. Then there's the behind-the-scenes wrangling between Microsoft and PC manufacturers.

Some analysts compare it to a soap opera. Soap operas thrive on sickness, and the PC segment is currently ailing. Worldwide PC shipments totaled 68.1 million units in the second quarter, a five percent decline from the second quarter of 2008, according to preliminary results from Gartner.

"In the first quarter of 2009, inventory restocking played a major role in shipment growth, but this was less of a factor in the second quarter," said Mikako Kitagawa, principal analyst at Gartner. "Though the market was still in decline, the better-than-expected results can be interpreted as a small sign of a PC market recovery in terms of shipment volumes in some regions."

Price-Sensitive PC OEMs

Although the down economy has hit just about every tech sector, some PC OEM health issues are self-induced, according to Rob Enderle, principal analyst at the Enderle Group. OEMs put software on their PCs to make a few more points of margin, but that often critically damages the user experience, he said. These OEMs generally feel unwilling to truly own their customers, so are likely to point the finger at Microsoft if there is a problem. Therein is the soap opera.

"The word dysfunctional seems hardly adequate to this situation. Part of this is money-related in that the OEMs think that Microsoft is taking more than its fair share of the profits," Enderle said. "But I think the root cause is a fundamental shift in these vendors' relationships. While initially PC vendors held the primary position, over time Microsoft has come to occupy the alpha position, and OEMs are passively/aggressively rebelling against this change."

On one side of the table, OEMs complain about Microsoft's pricing, its complexity, and the lack of funding to generate demand, Enderle said. On the other side of the table, Microsoft treats the OEMs as subordinates, not partners, dictating terms such as pricing and product retirement. As Enderle sees it, the problem isn't really Microsoft. Rather, it's the OEM's inability to focus on anything beyond price.

Microsoft Embraces OEMs

Microsoft has made clear efforts to treat OEMs more like partners with the Windows 7 development and its retail operations. Microsoft stores will feature PCs and laptops from partners, offering another sales channel. Microsoft's retail strategy is ramping up slowly, but the strategy is in place. Enderle thinks this is a step in the right direction toward stifling much of the infighting between vendors.

"The PC market has long been defined by dysfunctional behavior, but that is about to change," Enderle said. "Microsoft is quietly moving to consolidate its control over the PC platform and, if they do it correctly, the result may be a set of products that blend the interoperability and compatibility of a Microsoft solution with the user experience of an Apple product."
 

Tell Us What You Think
Comment:

Name:



APC has an established a reputation for solid products that virtually pay for themselves upon installation. Who has time to spend worrying about system downtime? APC makes it easy for you to focus on business growth instead of business downtime with reliable data center systems and IT solutions. Learn more here.


 Microsoft/Windows
1.   Patch Tuesday Offers Critical Fixes
2.   China Approves Microsoft-Nokia Deal
3.   Microsoft Pulls Plug on Windows XP
4.   Against a Wall, Some Buy XP Support
5.   Last Fixes Tuesday for XP, Office 2003


advertisement
Product Information and Resources for Technology You Can Use To Boost Your Business

Network Security Spotlight
Google's Street View Software Unravels CAPTCHAs
The latest software Google uses for its Street View cars to read street numbers in images for Google Maps works so well that it also solves CAPTCHAs, those puzzles designed to defeat bots.
 
Canadian Teen Arrested for Heartbleed Hack
One week after the OpenSSL Heartbleed vulnerability was unveiled, Canadian authorities have made the first arrest -- a London, Ontario teenager -- connected to exploiting the security hole.
 
IBM Offers Security, Disaster Recovery as SoftLayer Service
New disaster recovery and security services for SoftLayer clients are being added by IBM. Big Blue said the new capabilities will speed cloud adoption by alleviating concern over business continuity.
 

Enterprise Hardware Spotlight
Vaio Fit 11A Battery Danger Forces Recall by Sony
Using a Sony Vaio Fit 11A laptop? It's time to send it back to Sony. In fact, Sony is encouraging people to stop using the laptop after several reports of its Panasonic battery overheating.
 
Continued Drop in Global PC Shipments Slows
Worldwide shipments of PCs fell during the first three months of the year, but the global slump in PC demand may be easing, with a considerable slowdown from last year's drops.
 
Google Glass Finds a Home in Medical Education, Practice
Google Glass may find its first markets in verticals in which hands-free access to data is a boon. Medicine is among the most prominent of those, as seen in a number of Glass experiments under way.
 

Mobile Technology Spotlight
Google Releases Chrome Remote Desktop App for Android
You're out on a sales call, and use your Android mobile device to grab a file you have back at the office on your desktop. That's a bit easier now with Google's Chrome Remote Desktop app for Android.
 
Amazon 3D Smartphone Pics Leaked
E-commerce giant Amazon is reportedly set to launch a smartphone after years of development. Photos of the phone, which may feature a unique 3D interface, were leaked by tech pub BGR.
 
Zebra Tech Buys Motorola Enterprise for $3.45B
Weeks after Lenovo bought Motorola Mobility’s assets from Google for $2.91 billion, Zebra Technologies is throwing down $3.45 billion for Motorola’s Enterprise business in an all-cash deal.
 

Navigation
Sci-Tech Today
Home/Top News | Computing | Digital Life | Discovery | Space | Innovation | Health | Science News
Environment
NewsFactor Network Enterprise I.T. Sites
NewsFactor Technology News | Enterprise Security Today | CRM Daily

NewsFactor Business and Innovation Sites
Sci-Tech Today | NewsFactor Business Report

NewsFactor Services
FreeNewsFeed | Free Newsletters | XML/RSS Feed

About NewsFactor Network | How To Contact Us | Article Reprints | Careers @ NewsFactor | Services for PR Pros | Top Tech Wire | How To Advertise

Privacy Policy | Terms of Service
© Copyright 2000-2014 NewsFactor Network. All rights reserved. Article rating technology by Blogowogo. Member of Accuserve Ad Network.