Although chip-maker Intel has been totally BFF with Microsoft for like years and years, their relationship now seems to be on very rocky ground. An anonymous insider from Intel revealed last week that the company has decided not to upgrade the computers for its 80,000 strong work force to Windows Vista. Not ever.
After a lengthy analysis of the costs and benefits associated with upgrading to the new software, the decision was made to wait out this round of operating systems. The anonymous source told NY Times: “This isn’t a matter of dissing Microsoft, but Intel information technology staff just found no compelling case for adopting Vista.” So they think Microsoft’s flagship product sucks so much they don’t want to touch it. I’d call that a major dissing, with a strong hint of pwning.
Given the sensitivity of the relationship between the two companies, it’s an extremely damning blow for Microsoft, which has stumbled in several areas with its latest OS. At launch, users were severely disappointed by the lack of promised new features and overwhelmed by the power required to run it. Individual users seem to have overcome many of these concerns, helped by the frequent updates over the past 18 months, but for companies operating hundreds or thousands of systems, making a costly upgrade is even less appealing.
And there’s a further factor catalysing the situation too. Microsoft is officially axing Vista’s predecessor, Windows XP, as of today. Oh, it’ll exist in terms of support and a cut-down version will still be around for ULPCs, but essentially it is dead. There have been many protests from consumers about the move but unfortunately to little avail.
Perhaps Intel’s obvious lack of faith in Microsoft’s latest software will make the industry giant think twice about its decision, but even so, it seems unlikely to do anything about it. The most important question is whether Wintel will be back in cahoots for Windows 7 or whether the lure of new Linux and Mac operating systems have made their mark.