"Vista sells on almost 100 per cent of all the new consumer PCs around the world," the Microsoft CEO proclaimed. He added that the operating system was also selling on, "45 percent of all of new business PCs". Which is enlightening, since business users are about the ony buyers of new PCs that get a choice.
Ballmer, speaking at a press conference at Microsoft's new Strategic R&D centre in Herzeliya, said overall, Vista, "has had a good unit volume market reaction." He said he was happy with sales of the product to date.
The Microsoft CEO addressed comments that the company’s new operating system was half-cocked, and that user response to the OS had been luke warm at best.
He admitted there was no question there were things people had not responded to well and that “application compatibility in Vista was not as high as many of our customers would have liked.”
He added: “That is improving, not because we’ve changed Vista, but because the applications are getting upgraded to be Vista compatible.”
Whether Vista really is an upgrade, or just something of a weighty and awkward downgrade can still be argued, but Ballmer puts the problems down to the “tricky” balance between compatibility and security.
“What we have learned is that maybe our customers care a little bit more about compatibility and a little bit less about security” he ventured. He added that it always took people a while to get used to new things and that Vista was no exception.
“When you change the look of your product, you always think it looks better, but your users always have to get used to the new one”.
“I think we’re going through something of a process whereby Vista users are still getting used to Vista after moving from XP”.
Ballmer also noted the Xbox had been "a funny product for us" and that the company had struggled for a while trying to figure out how to make money out of it.
"The same applies to Zune," he laughed, "except we still haven't figured out how to make money out of that one."Also see our massive XP vs Vista face-off.And check out Jon Honeyball's take on What Vista Might Have Been.What do you think? Is Vista's sales success deserved? Add your comment below.