» Headline first, accuracy second

Ed Bott reruns Gartner’s latest wild guesses about what the operating system landscape will be in four years. I seriously don’t know why they bother with this exercise other than it makes for headlines with their name in them. Headlines that spin the wrong conclusions, but headlines nonetheless.

Microsoft retains relevance by virtue of being on laptops, but I’m always leery of projected spikes that are predicted in a couple of years, which is what Gartner shows for Windows. Sounds a lot like the old cartoon with the scientists inserting “a miracle happens” in the part of the formula they don’t understand. I guess the theory is the next version of Windows is sure to catch on? Or just that Microsoft always wins eventually because Microsoft? Gartner doesn’t really say in their press release. Go back a couple of years and you’ll see similar spikes were projected for Windows Phone. They didn’t happen, in case you haven’t noticed.

Android’s share goes up the most, but Bott correctly notes that it gets more fragmented into Google, China, Samsung and Amazon flavors, so it’s not exactly a huge win for Google.

While Android goes gangbusters and Microsoft gets a miracle, Gartner predicts Apple will chug along at a steady pace. Because they’re a slow growth company now and are sure not to release anything other than iterative updates forever and ever, the end.


So, while Bott does help fix the numbers a bit, I’m not sure there’s really any ultimate fixing of these numbers.