McLaws is right on Windows Vista ship date

I’m sad to agree with Robert McLaws about Windows Vista’s ship schedule. This sucker is just not ready. Too many things are too slow and/or don’t work. I’ve been on the betas of every Windows OS since Windows 3.1 and Vista is starting to feel good, but it doesn’t feel good enough to release to the factory in October. It feels like it needs a good six more months than that, which would mean a mid-year release next year.

Some things that need to be fixed? UI issues (see Chris Pirillo). Speed/performance issues (unless it’ll only be run on super-fast new computers — I went back to XP on my Lenovo Tablet PC because Vista was sluggish and the drivers weren’t reliable). Application compatibility (I’m hearing that many apps are having problems). Driver compat (my Dell computer at Microsoft never worked completely, and a coworker called me a few days ago to ask “did you ever get the soundcard working?”)

Remember: no one will remember whether this thing slipped another few months IF it’s a good product when it comes out (remember Windows 2000? It slipped by years). But everyone will remember if this is a disaster (the community is still talking about Windows ME, which was a particularly horrible release).

If this ships in October, I will recommend not installing it and waiting for the first service pack. There’s no way the quality will be high enough to trust it if it ships early. I hope Microsoft takes the time to do this right.

If they don’t Apple will have far more market share at the end of 2007 than it will if Microsoft ships a great release.

Speaking of Apple, they are readying a dizzying amount of new products. I wish I could camp out at an Apple store during the World Wide Developer Conference on August 7th. I wish I could say more, but that’d get me sued by Steve Jobs and I don’t need that kind of heck right now.