No Consumer Vista Seen For 2006

    March 22, 2006
    WebProNews Staff

While business users will have Microsoft’s new Vista operating system available in November 2006, the company will miss this year’s lucrative holiday shopping season as its consumer version of Vista has slipped to January 2007.

Microsoft announced its long-awaited Vista operating system would miss its projected 2006 availability for the consumer market. The enterprise market will be able to begin receiving Vista through the volume licensing program in which many firms participate.

“Product quality and a great out-of-box experience have been two of our key drivers for Windows Vista, and we are on track to deliver on both,” Jim Allchin, co-president for the Platforms & Services Division at Microsoft, said in the statement. “But the industry requires greater lead time to deliver Windows Vista on new PCs during holiday. We must optimize for the industry, so we’ve decided to separate business and consumer availability.”

Executives with Hewlett Packard and Best Buy voiced their support for Microsoft’s shifted delivery date. Considering the kind of business Vista could have generated this year for each firm, that support may have been voiced through tightly gritted teeth.

Similar support has not been forthcoming from the online community. Microsoft reform advocate blogger Mini-Microsoft fantasized about the consequences for those responsible for missing the holiday ship date:

In my afternoon daydream, after Allchin’s email went out, I imagined all the L68+ partners from the Windows division gathered together and told, “You are our leadership. When we succeed, it is directly because of how you lead and manage your teams. When we fail, it is directly because of how you lead and manage your teams. We’ve had enough of failure and we’ve had enough of you. Drop off your badge on the way out. Your personal belongings will be dropped off at your house. Now get out of my sight.”

However, ZDNet Windows blogger Ed Bott perceived a positive about the delay:

I am relieved, greatly, that Microsoft decided to push off the release of Windows Vista by approximately three months. First, because it means that we’ll have the time to do a proper job on Windows Vista Inside Out. Second, because it increases the likelihood that Vista will be a solid release instead of a shrink-wrapped final beta.

The stock market did not take the news well. Shares of MSFT declined in trading yesterday by fifteen cents to $27.74. In after-hours trading, the price fell another 71 cents to $27.03.

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David Utter is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business.