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Computer Buyer: Comment: SuSE Linux 7.2 - Linux for the desktop?

Jun 25, 2001, 23:00 (1 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Matt Whipp)

The reviewer really doesn't tell us anything about SuSE Linux 7.2; instead, he takes the occasion to offer his punditry on how Linux can succeed on the desktop. He doesn't think that Linux will succeed on its own merits: instead, he writes that Linux's only shot is attracting disaffected Windows users.

"Is it ready for the consumer desktop? Well, unfortunately it's difficult to see where the demand would come from. Its geeky image will still be off-putting for consumers, despite the price advantage, and vendors will probably prefer the markup they get from bundling Windows with their systems, rather than Linux."

"But Microsoft may change things with its Enterprise Agreement Subscription. As we reported, this program seeks to make it financially unfriendly for corporate customers not to upgrade to every new release of Windows by introducing this subscription model. However, the subscription model is more price-sensitive, and business customers are likely to see the Linux alternative, coupled with its technical support, in a more favourable light. It's then that users might feel they want the same OS at home as they use at work and choose Linux."

"Similarly, we might see a move to Linux with ASP services supplied to set-top boxes, where users download applications, say StarOffice, on demand, storing their documents with the ASP. Again, the price-sensitive subscription model may mean the cheapest triumphs."

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