updated 11:40 am EDT, Wed October 7, 2009
Ballmer views only small gain from Win 7
Microsoft chief Steve Ballmer today cast doubt on the likelihood that the imminent release of Windows 7 will spur growth in computer sales. He told those at a Munich press event that he still anticipates a bump in sales from those waiting for the new OS but that it would "probably not be huge." The economy is blamed for the hesitation as Ballmer doesn't see the industry fully recovering for a significant amount of time.
The forecast poses a potential danger for Microsoft as the company is counting on the release of Windows 7 to offset two quarters of revenue declines and its first ever annual drop in revenue, all of which was triggered by drops in sales for its core Windows business. Reluctance was compounded by the poor economy but was initially triggered by fears of incompatibility and slow performance with Windows Vista.
Apple hasn't predicted its own unit shipments but should have received a boost this summer with Mac OS X Snow Leopard and usually gets a significant lift from holiday sales.