Microsoft Corp. launched its first new computer operating system in five years Thursday, saying that despite delays, the product's emergence is perfectly timed for PC users who increasingly need to coordinate information from a dizzying array of sources.
Opening an hourlong demonstration and press conference at the Nasdaq Stock Market, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer acknowledged that Windows Vista should have been out long ago.
I should probably say it's an exciting thing to finally be here _ and that's all I'll say about the past," Ballmer said, before adding: "This is the biggest launch in our company's history, that's for sure."
Businesses that buy Windows licenses in bulk have first crack at PCs with the new operating system or at upgrade discs for installing Vista on existing machines. Consumers won't be able to get Vista on home PCs until Jan. 30.
Analysts expect slow adoption of the new operating system as businesses test it for compatibility with their programs or wait for Microsoft to work out any kinks that may exist in the first release.
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