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Businesses Microsoft Oracle Windows's Benioff Disses Windows 8, Oracle 182

An anonymous reader writes " CEO Marc Benioff is the latest to predict Windows 8 will be a disaster for Microsoft, but for a different reason than some others: he says that Windows is simply irrelevant in the new era of cloud computing and bring-your-own-devices (BYOD), which will become clear to corporate IT decision makers when they confront the upgrade decision. Of course, this conveniently dovetails with Salesforce's market position, so consider the source. Another interesting development is the growing rivalry between Benioff and his old boss Larry Ellison; is a longtime Oracle shop, but they have just announced intentions to hire 40-50 PostgreSQL developers."
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  • Another moron CEO (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Scutter ( 18425 ) on Sunday October 21, 2012 @09:48AM (#41721299) Journal

    Windows (and, by extension, desktop computing) is irrelevant because people have iPads. Seriously, this guy is completely out of touch. It may be great for the CEO who never has to do any real work with a computer, but an iPad is wholly unsuitable for anything other than Angry Birds and checking your Facebook. It's a media consumption device, not something used to create and manipulate spreadsheets. The fact that "Windows is irrelevant" because of "the cloud" speaks to his complete misunderstanding of the technology.

  • by Austerity Empowers ( 669817 ) on Sunday October 21, 2012 @10:04AM (#41721373)

    Agreed, unless Windows 8 was designed around tablets and Angry Birds rather than desktops and laptops. MS would never consider taking their (inexplicably) successful desktop OS and dumbing it down to work on devices where they have nearly 0% market share and have the status of has-been, or never-were. That'd be an unmitigated disaster, no company would be so foolish.

  • by Seeteufel ( 1736784 ) on Sunday October 21, 2012 @10:05AM (#41721383) Homepage
    Look, in an enterprise environment you don't need Win8. There is absolutely no reason to upgrade and seriously, we are now operating system agnostics again. Macs do just fine. Linux Desktops will be also fine unless they are called Linux Desktops. Our operating system is now the browser.
  • Windows 9 (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Tony Isaac ( 1301187 ) on Sunday October 21, 2012 @10:19AM (#41721425) Homepage

    What Mr. Benioff is forgetting is that Windows 8 is a throw-away version of Windows. Big business is too busy moving to Windows 7 from XP right now, they were going to skip Windows 8 no matter how good or bad it was! Microsoft has a long history of playing catch-up, and then overtaking the competition long after the competition thought they had the game sewed up. Windows 8 may be a colossal dud, but don't count Microsoft out yet.

  • by NeutronCowboy ( 896098 ) on Sunday October 21, 2012 @10:20AM (#41721431)

    Here's the reality: a lot of people don't need a full computer. Their corporate life is either spent consuming content, or it is spent talking to someone and jotting down some quick notes.

    Yes, there are engineers who program and business analysts who create spreadsheets (although what excel is being used for is a whole other horror story....). But the majority of management, all of sales, and much of marketing and PR is focused on consuming content and creating small, simple chunks of content. iPads are perfect for that. I know (second-hand) how much work is done on iPad, because all that work consists of checking email, writing quick emails, and pulling content off of the corporate intranet. From that perspective, he is right. Is he overselling his case? He sure is - then again, every statement by competent CEOs should be assumed to be nothing but advocating for the company, regardless of the reality of the situation.

    For me, windows 8 is going to flop because it's the wrong OS for the wrong device from the wrong company: the desktop needs a full UI designed for creating content, not just consuming content. It also has to be efficient in that process, and not give them an interface designed for consuming content on a 4 inch screen. Finally, Microsoft is not a device and services company, no matter how much Ballmer wants to believe that. It is a business software/services company with a consumer division grafted on top of it. It might want to refocus itself, before it loses even its business clout.

  • by TheLink ( 130905 ) on Sunday October 21, 2012 @10:45AM (#41721577) Journal
    There's another factor if you're using cloud services for day-to-day operations - internet connectivity uptime.

    The cloud service provider could be up, but if your internet connection is down you can't use the services.

    In many countries the internet connectivity uptime is worse than internal server uptime when managed by a not too crappy IT team.

    It's fine if the cloud services are for public facing operations - in which case the public user's internet connectivity is usually not your problem, they don't blame you if their connection is down.
  • by pointyhat ( 2649443 ) on Sunday October 21, 2012 @11:12AM (#41721753)

    Ah yes where they replaced integration incompatibility with service contract versioning problems and monolithic broker based messaging instead!

    I've been through both phases as a solution architect - same turd rolled in different glitter.

  • by N3tRunner ( 164483 ) * on Sunday October 21, 2012 @11:16AM (#41721777)
    The idea of BYOD may kill Windows 10, but it's nowhere near the level of acceptance necessary to kill Windows 8. My business won't let *any* outside devices connect to their network for security reasons, and I suspect that they're not at all alone in that respect. Chained-down PCs running whatever the company's acceptable suite of apps may be are still the norm.
  • by evilviper ( 135110 ) on Sunday October 21, 2012 @11:29AM (#41721851) Journal

    Enjoy the smartphone & tablet bubble while it lasts, but CYA because you never know when it'll come suddenly crashing down. Over night, Apple will go from the king of all companies, to one that is painfully obviously over-valued with stock prices in a decline that seems like it won't ever end. And analysts will rant on about how obvious it was that Apple's non-diversified monoculture was such a bad idea, and claim they said so, before.

    That's not to say smartphones or tablets will be going away... just that there's room and money for everyone ONLY while the segment is expanding like crazy. As soon as that growth even slows, the crunch will be sudden and extremely painful, as companies fall daily, and all the hype that helped keep accelerating the bubble suddenly does a 180 and fuels the crash even more quickly. And let's not forget, that the guys left for dead during the bubble will be revered by the business community for their stable strategy that didn't jump headlong into the hype.

    Of course there will be plenty of cheap hardware at fire-sale prices to play with, for quite a while. And soon, the world will be restored to a much more sane place, where the distortion of the previous bubble is forgotten, and some other bubble starts growing.

  • Re:Yeah well... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by hairyfeet ( 841228 ) <bassbeast1968@gm ... minus herbivore> on Sunday October 21, 2012 @12:43PM (#41722239) Journal

    The real elephant corpse stinkin' up the room though is while the whole "cloud everything" might work in the enterprise frankly its consumers NOT enterprise driving sales and the consumers are getting squeezed by the ISPs with ever higher prices and lower caps. The whole "Do everything in the cloud" idea was tried a decade ago and it bombed then and it'll bomb even worse now. Hell why do you think the ISPs were so willing to go along with the 6 strikes shit? Because it'll let them cherry pick their customers and only keep the ones that don't use a tenth of what they pay for, letting them oversubscribe that much worse without having to run any new lines!

    As for Win 8? YOU know its shit, I know its shit, even my little old lady customers that tried out the Win 8 system i have sitting in the shop hated the damned thing. The #1 reaction by far I got to Win 8 at the shop was "Why would I want my computer to act like a cellphone?" because lets face it, that is what it is, its the bastard hybrid Frankenstein between WinPhone and Windows and frankly does neither role well. And honestly I think the whole "BYOD" thing is overhyped as those customers I have that are bringing their iPad to work are using it as a glorified netbook/notepad. They still have and use their laptops, they just carry the iPad for the basic mundane tasks that's all.

    Saying the tablets are gonna kill the PC is like saying mopeds are gonna wipe out truck sales because the moped is so easy to park. Its two totally different use cases with VERY little overlap, the reason PC sales are down is simply because for the past several years both AMD and Intel have been selling monsters that are several times more powerful than what the user actually needs so people don't see the point of upgrading as often, that's all. ARM is at the point where the PC was in the mid 90s, where a unit from 2 years ago would struggle with the latest programs, no different than how that 700MHz P3 was quickly made obsolete thanks to the ever rising clocks and software designed to take advantage of it.

    Mark my words but I think you'll see the exact same thing that happened to X86 happen to ARM very soon, only whereas X86 hit a thermal wall with ARM its gonna be the battery, even the ARM holdings group has been talking about having "dark silicon" because the battery would go dead so fast as to make the unit worthless if they turned on all the silicon. Mark my words when that happens other than the Apple fans for whom using last year's model is like wearing last year's fashions most will see no point in the constant replacing and will stick with what they have until it breaks. We are already seeing a race to the bottom just as we saw on the PC, with many talking about how dual core ARM tablets will be sub $80, maybe even sub $50, so its just a matter of time before ARM ends up just like X86, not replaced until the previous one croaks.

  • Re:Yeah well... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Brave Guy ( 457657 ) on Sunday October 21, 2012 @02:04PM (#41722717)

    You make a lot of bold claims there, but they are obviously controversial and you haven't cited any actual data to back them up.

    For example, why do you think AMD has only months left? They made a loss in Q3 and they're cutting their workforce, but they still took over $1B in revenues and have over 10,000 employees. That's almost certainly enough scale to survive a bad year or two while they reposition, which is exactly what their CEO said they would be doing on their Q3 call.

    And I don't buy your argument about tablets replacing PCs at all. Tablets serve very well as a convenient portable information consumption device. For households that don't have any greater needs than that, sure, maybe they can do without a PC. But anyone who is doing anything creative is going to need way more capabilities than any tablet offers. That includes almost all business use and anyone who likes to send messages that don't fit in a txt msg or tweet, just to name two obvious and huge groups where tablets have no chance of replacing PCs. In short, saying tablets will make PCs obsolete would be like saying cell phones or games consoles would make PCs obsolete. Those things didn't happen, because we're talking about different tools for different jobs.

    For the same reason, trying to push UI paradigms that have been reasonably successful on small, primarily consumption-based mobile devices onto a general purpose PC that is also used for creative work seems like a poorly thought-out idea to me. Between that and the evidence from Vista that people won't upgrade to a new version of Windows just because it's the new version of Windows any more, I'm skeptical about the course Microsoft seems to be charting with Windows 8.

Research is what I'm doing when I don't know what I'm doing. -- Wernher von Braun