With the Windows 8 launch right around the corner, Microsoft has begun encouraging businesses to plan out their OS migration path. At the same time, the company really encourages those businesses still rocking out to Windows XP to accelerate their migrations, as official support for the OS ends on April 8, 2014. That may be a good while off, but deployments in many business environments don't happen quickly, namely due to application support. As far as Microsoft is concerned, the faster Windows XP dies, the better.
Microsoft isn't ignorant of the fact that Windows 7 is still a solid OS, so it recommends businesses currently using it to stick with it (despite it now being Microsoft's previous OS, the company will still generate revenue from it for years to come). That said, it does encourage Windows 8 considerations in some cases, such as if someone needs to develop apps for the OS, are testing on mobile devices like tablets or are planning to support BYOD scenarios.
There's an interesting trend to be found in Microsoft's post, and it can be summed up in one line: "with the goal to move to an environment with Windows 8 deployed side-by-side with Windows 7." It almost seems as though Microsoft is not only fine with the idea that Windows 8 won't be the only version of Windows deployed in business environments, but in a light way, even encourages it. Many have speculated (myself included) that Windows 8 would wind up a tanked release following in the footsteps of Microsoft's scary-accurate tick/tock scheme (where one OS is generally excellent and the follow-up is far from it).
It could be that Windows 8 just doesn't have as much of a business focus as many of us have automatically believed. This is made possible simply by the fact that, to most, Windows 7 is a solid, stable and well-supported OS.
What's Microsoft's message if you're running Windows Vista? Jokes-we're-all-thinking aside, the company encourages a migration path off of it, namely due to the gain of "significant mobility, security and productivity benefits".
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