VMware hails post-Microsoft Windows era

News 9 May, 2012

Vendor claims the rise of BYOD and cloud means Microsoft's days as the operating system of choice in the enterprise are numbered.

Virtualisation giant VMware has suggested that Microsoft’s hold on the enterprise market could be coming to an end, thanks to cloud and the bring your own device trend.

In the keynote address at VMware’s Forum in London today, Joe Baguley, the firm's chief cloud technologist, said the proliferation of devices in the workplace means fewer people will use Microsoft Windows in the future.

We replace our operating systems for the same reason we replace our socks, because the old ones have worn out.

The downturn in IT departments “writing stuff” for Microsoft Windows is proof that this transformation has already started, claimed Baguley.

Citing feedback from an informal get together between VMware and CIOs from across Europe, he also claimed very few would choose Windows for a Greenfield desktop project.

“I asked CIOs, ‘if you had a brand new, Greenfield company to set up tomorrow with 5,000 users, how many of you would rollout Windows Desktops?’ Not one hand went up,” he claimed.

The rise of operating system neutral applications is fueling this trend, as end users do not want devices to limit how they access their data and applications.

He predicted that operating systems will be replaced in time by open Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) constructs that allow end users to run applications wherever they like.

“That’s why we’ve developed an open PaaS and that’s where the next battles will be fought in our industry. We believe by having the first and only truly open Paas, we are truly positioned to answer that need,” he added.

During a post-keynote press briefing, Baguley added, with Windows XP reaching end of life in April 2014, many firms are seizing on this to ditch Microsoft completely.

“We replace our desktops the same way we change our socks. We replace them because the old ones have worn out,” he explained. “Now we’re being forced to, people are using this as an opportunity to do things a different way.”