The British Educational Communications and Technology Agency (BECTA) has issued a report advising UK schools not to upgrade to either Windows Vista or Office 2007. Neither new release offers any must-have features over the previous release, and the $350 million deployment cost (only about 30% of that would go to Microsoft) just wouldn’t be justified by any significant gains.
We already know that Windows Vista sucks, being the worst operating system to come out of Redmond since Windows ME, but I haven’t written much about Office 2007 yet (I plan to rectify that in the next couple days). Needless to say, my opinions of both “upgrades” are equally low.
So, out of £175,000,000, over 60% would go to deployment costs. That includes hardware upgrades, labor for installing the software, and so on. And the upgraded computers wouldn’t even necessarily be able to run the much-hyped (ugly, in my opinion) Aero interface. That’s a lot of money for not much in the way of actual upgrade value.
I’m happy to hear that the British are being smart and have seen that Vista isn’t really an improvement on XP (and that Office 2007 is really no better than 2003). While they don’t seem to say it, I can hope that, in the back of their minds, they were thinking, “Man, these new releases are horrid!” At least I can dream about it…