Microsoft’s plan for Windows 10 world domination – Computerworld

In hindsight, it’s now apparent that Microsoft’s plan last year for promoting Windows 10 on PCs had less to do with the single decision to give away upgrades than with a radical scheme that relied on an unprecedented distribution strategy.

In the last 12 months, Microsoft has carefully unveiled several steps to boost Windows 10’s adoption. At each step, Microsoft touted customer benefits, even as it took measures that no operating system vendor had used to boost adoption, even as some of those steps generated criticism from users who balked at the new practices.

It’s impossible for those outside Microsoft’s inner sanctums to know whether the moves the company made were an inclusive strategy that was pre-ordained, an ad hoc series that was crafted on the fly, or a set of contingencies that, like a BASIC program written by Bill Gates decades ago, was a list of IF-THEN statements, some called in play, others discarded and thus unknown to the public.

The course Microsoft’s taken sure seems like a planned strategy, or at least, one with multiple choices at various points. Evidence of that lies largely in the work Microsoft did ahead of time on Windows Update, the 21-year-old update and maintenance service almost exclusively dedicated to delivering security patches. Microsoft has added significant functionality to Windows Update in the past year so that it can support upgrades from one OS edition to another.

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