Two weeks ago, Joe Wilcox of Microsoft Watch insisted “Microsoft, you need to get some good leaks out there to generate buzz. Please, let’s see more of this. … If (Shipping) Seven provides some juicy details, people will subscribe to his or her feed, and enthusiast sites will report or blog every little feature.”
Today, an obviously different Joe demands radio silence over Windows 7 proclaiming “buzz about the next Windows version distracts potential Vista adopters.”
Unfortunately this appears to be a dilemma only affecting Microsoft. In contrast, Apple who announced OSX Leopard (10.5) in June of 2005, two years before its eventual release had no problems selling Tiger (10.4) nor Tiger-based Macs through almost two full years.
A year after Leopard’s announcement in 2006, Apple sold 1.61 million Macs with Tiger, 30% growth over the year. When Leopard eventually was released in 2007, Apple sold a record 2.16 million Macs with Leopard, 34% growth over the year. Buzz about the next OSX version, even though Leopard didn’t change all that much from 2005 to 2007, surely didn’t distract any Apple adopters.
Joe also argues “(Windows) Seven won’t be a big, splashy successor, so why make it seem so?” I agree. In fact, these screenshots and videos are in some ways helping users understand Windows 7 is not some space-age operating system that’s going to shift every Windows paradigm into overdrive. Joe even shares a little about his shady past, “I recall the M1 leaks of Windows Longhorn back in 2003. I downloaded and used the warez software before writing about it. The UI already radically departed from Windows XP.” The difference here is Longhorn started off looking like the space-age operating system when it never could have been. Windows 7 on the other hand, looks modest and realistic.
After only insulting the blogger behind Shipping Seven, Joe turns around to say “I do see value in the Shipping Seven blog, which appears to be written by a Microsoft insider with some common sense.”
But what Joe really means is that we stop talking about Windows 7 after he’s had the last word. He speculates “PDC 2008 tips off that Windows Seven’s target release will be 2009. Microsoft generally, but not always, coordinates developer conferences with new Windows version development.” Gee, playing the release guess-date card so soon?
Speaking of distractions, I remember someone writing “Windows Vista is a train wreck“, but can’t recall who…