Wednesday, September 03, 2003

A Longhorn Delay? Not Quite

A Longhorn Delay? Not Quite: "News about a potential delay in Windows Longhorn, the next major update to Windows XP, has quickly evolved from mindless analysts predictions to so-called fact, with several major tech news outlets reporting on Microsoft's supposed setbacks. But Microsoft has never really announced a Longhorn release date, opting instead to refer to dates that are usually a few years out, owing to the complexity of what the company hopes to achieve with the Longhorn release. But that doesn't stop half the tech industry from reporting on a delay, and if this is how the next two years are going to go, it's going to feel like an eternity.
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In the absence of any real news, and with a two year window in which to manufacture spin, many tech outlets have taken the initiative in an effort to supply eager readers with more Longhorn information. A tech industry analyst recently predicted that Longhorn would slip until 2006, a prediction that's so obvious given the 2005 target date and Microsoft's historical inability to meet time tables for major products, that it shouldn't have even merited discussion. But in the rumor-happy tech industry, that prediction was widely reported and is suddenly a solid piece of evidence that Microsoft is stumbling. It's a sad state of affairs."
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