The sputtering performance of Microsoft’s Windows 8 in the desktop PC market may seem to create an opportunity for competitors to get a foothold, but the opportunity for Linux may have passed, according to Network World. Citing Al Gillen, IDC program VP for servers and system software, the article said, “The Linux OS as a computing platform for end users is at least comatose—and probably dead. Yes, it has reemerged on Android and other devices, but it has gone almost completely silent as a competitor to Windows for mass deployment.” With tablets offering consumers many of the same entertainment and content-consumption features as PCs and notebooks, the average “user on the street” may no longer remain a target for Linux. A few diehards still promote the OS, often at the expense of Windows, but they have been unsuccessful at bringing large numbers into their fold.
In the business world, the reliance on content-creation software like Office and the various Adobe products (Photoshop being the biggest name) essentially locks out Linux as a possibility. Certainly, Microsoft would gain little from porting Office to Linux, and Adobe has expressed unwillingness to do so as well. Naturally, these companies are pursuing profits with their products, but part of the appeal of Linux is its open-source/free environment—an environment in which the Adobes and Microsofts of the world see little potential.
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