For those who can’t follow the money, this could be called the Idiot’s Guide to Microsoft. Will Windows 7 ship at the most opportune time for adoption? Of course it will – they are greedy and not stupid in Redmond.
When we found that the RC was to come in the first 6 months of the calendar year, only a completely non-involved person would not conclude that Windows 7 would not be available for Christmas
from ZDNet by Mary-Jo Foley
Microsoft officials are finally admitting what many company watchers, customers and partners have known for a while: Windows 7 is going to ship in 2009.
Specifically, Windows 7 is going to be generally available in time for holiday 2009. Windows Server 2008 R2 will ship “in the same timeframe,” officials are conceding.
If you’re thinking you read this somewhere before you have: In late April, a senior Windows exec told Bloomberg News that shipping Windows 7 in time for the holidays was “accomplishable.” On May 11, during the kick-off keynote for Microsoft’s annual TechEd USA conference, the Windows team is going way out on a limb and saying they actually WILL ship Windows 7 in time for it to be preloaded on holiday PCs.
Windows client officials are still declining to provide a release-to-manufacturing (RTM) target for Windows 7. They aren’t talking about when volume licensees will be able to get the bits. They still haven’t acknowledged the start date for the expected free upgrade program, via which users buying new PCs will get a Windows 7 upgrade for free. (The rumored date for that is July 1, by the way.) And the Win client team is still not mentioning an actual general availability target (not even a month) or a launch date.
In many ways — after what happened with Vista — I can’t blame Microsoft for being gun-shy about talking dates with Windows 7. After announcing it was going back to the drawing board to “reset” Longhorn (Vista) in 2004, Microsoft announced in early 2007 that it was not going to be able to launch Vista in time to get it preloaded on holiday PCs because it was going to miss its release-to-manufacturing (RTM) target.
This sort of thing is easily sussed if you get even one solid date from the company, and we got it, the RC was May 5. That pretty much set things on an immutable timetable. Microsoft will not let a holiday buying season get away this time, the way it did with Vista. Whether there are a few minor bugs or not, the shiny boxes will be on the appropriate shelves by December 1, so that all those red,white and blue lucky bucks can be spent on upgrades and new computers (the preloaded versions will be ready before Turkey day most likely. They want to be ready for Black Friday, to help pull them out of the recessionary spiral now happening.