Intel Boss Says Windows 8 Is Not Fit For Release
In comments sure to anger officials at Microsoft, the head of Intel says Windows 8 is not ready for release
The blood pressure of Microsoft’s Steve Ballmer might have spiked today after the boss of close partner Intel reportedly said Windows 8 was not ready for commercial release.
According to Bloomberg, Intel CEO Paul Otellini made the comments whilst speaking to his staff during a private meeting in Taiwan. The news publication quoted an unidentified employee who had attended the meeting in Taipei on Tuesday as its source.
Otellini reportedly said Microsoft was releasing Windows 8 before it was fully ready, and that improvements still needed to be made to it.
However, Otellini also recognised that Redmond had little choice in the matter and is reported to have said that releasing the operating system before all the bugs and kinks were ironed out was the right move, as Microsoft can make improvements and repair issues after the operating system ships on 26 October.
An Intel spokewoman speaking to Bloomberg refused to to comment on the internal meeting. However, she stressed that “Windows represents a tremendous opportunity for our business and we’re looking forward to working with Microsoft on enabling a host of new experiences on a variety of devices.”
“We are concerned at the level of bugs and fine tuning that appears necessary to get the beta systems we demoed ready for prime time,” Alex Gauna, an analyst at JMP Securities LLC in San Francisco, wrote in a 21 September research note.
Other critics have been more vocal. In July, the managing director of Valve Software, Gabe Newell, slammed the upcoming operating system from Redmond.
Newell, a former employee at Microsoft, said Windows 8 would cause much change in the PC market. He said its arrival will drive some PC developers out of business because it will put so much pressure on sales margins, as Microsoft will take a cut of up to 30 percent on everything sold through its app store.
Otellini’s comments, if accurate, will not be welcomed by Microsoft officials, as Redmond prepares for Windows 8′s big launch on 26 October and seeks to build up both developer and consumer interest in the new operating system.
Indeed, the comments are very surprising considering Intel has been Microsoft’s closest hardware partner for many years. Microsoft and Intel formed the famous Wintel partnership that has largely dominated the PC industry for the past 25 years.
But this partnership has come under strain in recent years and Intel has had to downgrade its outlook, as the impact of the uncertain global economy and slowing consumer demand for PCs continues to bite.
Intel for its part had been wrong-footed by the sales success of the tablet form factor, and has sought to counter this with its ultrabook concept, although the jury is still out over whether this expensive laptop alternative to the tablet form factor will succeed.
Microsoft, meanwhile, further upset some of its hardware partners after it revealed its own tablet device, dubbed the Surface. And Redmond has designed Windows 8 so that it will work equally well with both tablets and traditional PCs. Microsoft hopes that this dual system will give it a potential inroad into the tablet market amid slow sales of PCs.
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