MICROSOFT HAS KICKED off the year with a flurry of announcements headlined by the further expansion of Windows 10, while at the same time warning that people who continue to use Windows 7 do so at their peril.
The nigh-on compulsory update has now reached 200 million machines worldwide. We reported yesterday that Netmarketshare has it on 9.96 percent of machines. A quick bit of envelope-back maths suggests that Microsoft's aim to get the OS running on a billion machines by 2017 means that it's aiming for a 50 percent market share.
This seems a risky brag given that Windows 7, the last successful iteration of Windows, took four and a half years to reach that point. Mind you, that wasn't free.
But it hasn't stopped Redmond using extreme tactics to try to encourage upgraders. Before Christmas we reported on the new 'Upgrade Now' and 'Upgrade Tonight' options being presented to holdout users, without an obvious 'No' option. Now it appears that Microsoft has taken to slagging off its own in a bid to scare people on to Windows 10.
Microsoft chief marketing officer Chris Capossela told a viewer on Twit TV: "We do worry when people are running an operating system that's 10 years old that the next printer they buy isnt going to work well, or they buy a new game, they buy Fallout 4, and it doesnt work on a bunch of older machines.
"As we're pushing our hardware partners to build great new stuff that takes advantage of Windows 10, that obviously makes the old stuff really bad, and not to mention viruses and security problems. So we really are trying to push people to get to Windows 10."
This is, of course, complete bollocks. Fallout 4 works fine on Windows 7. Printers are more likely to work on Windows 7 than Windows 10 right now, and security protection for Windows 7 users will carry on until end-of-life in 2020.
But it now appears that Microsoft is so desperate to get people onto Windows 10 that it'll make barefaced lies to viewers, most of whom probably know the Windows ecosystem better than Microsoft's marketing department ever could.
There are other statistics that Microsoft has released that we're too annoyed to print right now.
The company has, however, announced that its Surface Book, the premium version of the Surface series, has now arrived on new shores, including the UK. The new and improved version, which automatically labels the standard Surface as 'old and inferior', is also available in Austria, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, New Zealand and Switzerland, with improved availability in Australia.
Prices for the Surface start at 1,299 and go up to 2,249, for which you could buy two top-of-the-range MacBooks.