Microsoft has a well-deserved reputation for product delays. In 2003, they announced that their next operating system, then codenamed Longhorn, wouldn't be released in 2005 as planned. Well, 2006 is here, and it looks like more of the same. This evening, Microsoft announced that their forthcoming operating system, now called Vista, would be delayed from the second half of '06 to January '07. While some claim to be stunned by the news, is anyone really surprised? The company did the same routine with Windows 98. Will this even have a material effect on the company? The corporate version will still be launched as planned, and the consumer migration to the new OS will happen gradually regardless of when it's released. Then again the announcement could end up hurting sales of the PC manufacturers. Come Christmas season, buyers may opt to buy trendy Macs, as opposed to PCs whose operating system will be obsolete within a matter of weeks. While Apple has been chided in the past for being dependent on third party technology (like underperforming IBM chips), their independence from Microsoft may be paying off.
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