I don't think you can write them off ..
Tish, someone else telling me what I can’t do … :-X
Are you familiar with the expression, “the bigger they come” ??
Perhaps I could quote you a few examples …
Once upon a time there was a company called Netscape, they were the first browser maker, they had the browser AND server AND proxy market sewn up, and their IPO make Mark A a billionaire. They went down like the Titanic with a lead hull. More recently we have “the” mobile phone of business from a company called RIM. They seem to have had a fairly dramatic decline for such a large and solid business. Apple that wonderfully successful company actually went down in 1997 and is only here today because it was saved by M$ (!) [wonder if Bill regrets that one?!]
Sun Microsystems were huge, they made their own chips, their own servers, produced and maintained Java, bought and supported MySQL and OpenOffice … they seemed to have mucho $$$'s in the bank when they went tits up! Not to mention of course SCO Unix, who had the PC Unix market sewn up, then within the space of 18 months or so, nobody wanted to know any more. (I could also mention Nokia who got so cheap they’re now M$, Sony who’re in real trouble, Yahoo who seem to be on an endless downward spiral, AOL pretty much went down in 2009 after having the US dialup market to themselves, and were split / rebranded, whereas in 2006 apparently, if you believe Wikipedia, 50% of all CD’s manufactured worldwide had AOL logo’s on them. That’s a pretty steep drop!)
Anyway, point is that M$ needs to have a very large income just to maintain.
Once that starts to drop, it’s a slippery slope. The problem they have is Android, there’s now more Android out there than all versions of Windows desktop put together, and given their “only” argument in terms of retaining the average user is familiarity, as soon as someone sticks an Android(ish) PC out there I really don’t see Windows 8 being an attractive alternative for someone who already has an Android Phone and possibly an Android tablet. (not least after you factor in the cost difference)
I have an Android box hooked up to my TV with bluetooth keyboard/mouse … it’s no good to a tekkie (although OpenVPN/ssh workfine) , but for your average home user, it wouldn’t take all that much tweaking for it to be a no-brainer Windows replacement.