Microsoft is preparing to reverse course over key elements of its Windows 8 operating system, marking one of the most prominent admissions of failure for a new mass-market consumer product since Coca-Cola’s New Coke fiasco nearly 30 years ago.
“Key aspects” of how the software is used will be changed when Microsoft releases an updated version of the operating system this year, Tami Reller, head of marketing and finance for the Windows business, said in an interview with the Financial Times. Referring to difficulties many users have had with mastering the software, she added: “The learning curve is definitely real.”
Analysts warned that changing course would be a significant admission of failure for Steve Ballmer, chief executive, who called the October launch of Windows 8 a “bet-the-company” moment as Microsoft sought to respond to the success of Apple’s iPad.............
..........The combination PC and tablet software was widely panned by reviewers and has been blamed by some analysts for worsening the slump in sales that has rocked the PC industry. Even before its launch, Tim Cook, chief executive of Apple, said Windows 8 would be like combining a toaster and a fridge – something that, while technically possible, was “probably not going to be pleasing to the user”.