Microsoft to Drop Windows Name?

Dennis Faas's picture

There's a rumor floating around that Microsoft may drop the "Windows" name altogether. But few are putting much stock in it.

The claim comes from a story covering this week's Worldwide Partner Conference, at which a Microsoft representative said that while Windows 8 is being targeted to run on desktops, notebooks, netbooks and tablets alike, the system after that may be designed to run on all types of hardware, including smartphones and even the Xbox 360 video game console.

The report claims that insider sources suggest there's more to the announcement:

"Microsoft is seriously considering ditching the 'Windows' brand name in favor of something new when all this goes down. The idea is to rebrand this new super-operating system with something that better fits with [the company's] vision of the future." (Source:

Ballmer Unlikely to Support Move

Even within this report, there's a note such a move is in no way guaranteed: there's mention of the fact that current Microsoft chief is a big advocate of the brand.

It certainly seems very hard to believe Microsoft will ever drop the Windows name. It's been around since 1985, making it only four years younger than the name "PC" in the way we understand it today.

Estimates vary, but the proportion of computer users running Windows is often estimated at something close to 90 per cent. Given these figures, estimates of the number of computers worldwide, and the fact that many computers are shared, it seems a fair guess that more than a billion people regularly use Windows.

Windows Brand a Key to Microsoft Value

Indeed, a marketing study in May rated Microsoft as the fifth-most valuable brand in the world, based on factors such as the recognition of the brand among consumers and the sales the brand helped drive.

The study estimated Microsoft's brand as being worth $78 billion, noting that much of this value was linked to its Windows products. (Source:

While there may have been an argument that the poor reception of Vista somewhat tarnished the Windows brand, that doesn't seem to have done any damage to Windows 7. Indeed, by using that name and then opting for the equally simple Windows 8, it's clear Microsoft believes the name still has immense power.

Rate this article: 
No votes yet