Right now it seems to me that Longhorn is being targeted at three communities:
- Home users, particularly those looking for a great multi-media experience
- Knowledge workers, especially those at the top end, who aggregate, integrate and assemble lots of information from many different sources
- Mobile workers, for whom thin client computing solutions don’t work and to whom the blend or personal and corporate features will appeal.
It’s got lots of other features that will appeal to the mass of task and structured task workers in corporate environments, but true thin client approaches will probably appeal more strongly for these users IT managers, particularly with the current wave of smart client rich UI toolkits that run on top of a JVM.
So how might this pan out in reality:
- Microsoft might get 20% market share from portable users
- A maximum of 20% market share from high end knowledge workers, who are not mobile
- Maybe 20% that it picks up just so they can use the same environment as the rest of the people in the office
So maybe that leaves 40% of users who will either switch to thin clients, unless Microsoft can convince businesses to stick with them because of the benefits …