Paul Thurrott reports Microsoft (MSFT +0.4%) has budgeted $405M for FY14 Windows retail marketing, up from $241M from FY13, as it tries to stoke interest in touch-optimized Windows hardware in the face of fierce Android/iOS competition.
Microsoft's promotional efforts are said to include providing $25 Windows Store gift cards with touch hardware purchases, and working with retailers to create "uncluttered and welcoming Windows centers."
The software giant is also reportedly aiming for 16M holiday season Windows tablet sales. For reference, IDC estimates industry-wide tablet shipments totaled 52.5M in Q4 2012; the 2013 figure will probably be above 70M.
Thurrott's report comes as Net Applications estimates Windows 8/8.1's share of the global PC base rose only 0.36% in October to 9.25%. 46.4% of PCs are believed to be running Windows 7 (up fractionally), which is widely preferred by enterprises, and 31.2% are still running Windows XP, which Microsoft (in an effort to get businesses to upgrade to Win. 7) will end support for next year.
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