After stepping into Bill Gates traditional slot for the opening CES keynote Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has delivered nothing new other than yet another gushing appraisal of their new Windows 7 operating system.
When Microsoft rolled out their ill fated Vista operating system senior executives at the time gushed over how easy it was to use, they said it would be make life easier for customers and that they could “do a lot more” than ever before.
Now two years on Steve Ballmer the CEO of Microsoft in a boring first CES Keynote which was devoid of any real announcements is saying exactly the same thing again but this time it’s for Windows 7 which will be made available on January 7th for developers.
On 9 January members of the public will get the chance to download the successor to Windows for themselves.
Ballmer said Windows 7 would be the pivot of a broader Microsoft push to improve the way its separate software and service families work together.
In delivering the opening keynote, Mr Ballmer has taken over from Bill Gates – who in 2008 bowed out of day-to-day involvement with the company he founded.
Also appearing on stage with Ballmer was Melbourne trio “Tripod” who were invited to the gig after writing a song about the Xbox 360.
In his presentation Ballmer showed concern about the economic backdrop against which this industry meets. He was also resolutely optimistic about the power of technology.
“It feels like we’ve entered a period of reduced expectations, a time when we may be tempted to temper our optimism and scale back our ambition,” Ballmer said.
“But no matter what happens with the economy, or how long this recession lasts,” Ballmer said, “I believe our digital lives will only continue to get richer. There really is no turning back from the connected world and the pace of technological advance bringing people closer together.”
The chief executive rehashed his company’s already well-articulated vision of offering software and services across the “three screens”: computers, televisions and mobile devices.
“The linchpin for bringing all of this together for you will be Windows,” Ballmer said.
“I guess CES is being used as a sort of broad market introduction to Windows 7,” Matt Rosoff, an analyst with Directions on Microsoft, said after being briefed on Microsoft’s announcements in advance.
Other major product introductions may have been held off to give Windows a wide berth, or perhaps they weren’t ready for prime time.
“In the past, they made an effort to really have something new at CES,” said Rosoff.