Microsoft Losing its Grip on UK Small Businesses?

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It's always best to be sceptical about the detailed results of surveys, but if they show consistent trends it's probably worth noting. Here's a good example:

According to an Accredited Supplier poll, Microsoft is losing their grip on the UK small business market under increasing pressure from cloud computing and open source software.

Accredited Supplier’s poll of 1400 Microsoft customers, all small businesses in the UK, has raised concerns over Microsoft’s future in this market segment. The results make pretty grim reading for Microsoft:

13% of businesses intend to switch to Google Apps within 12 months

32% use Firefox as their default browser within their business

Only 8% plan to upgrade to Windows 7 within 12 months of release

62% “prefer” or “strongly prefer” to have their business applications work through a browser.

Put another way, according to this survey few small business in the UK intend upgrading to Windows 7 soon; the majority want to move to solutions independent of the operating system, to those based on the browser; and fully a third of the companies are using Firefox, not Internet Explorer, for that purpose.

That adds up to a bunch of headaches for Microsoft if those results are mirrored across the whole of the UK, because it suggests some fairly seismic shifts are underway in the small business sector, and that the company is failing on multiple fronts.

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