One of the most celebrated and anticipated events in 2013, without a doubt, was the release of the Windows 8.1 operating system, which became the further development of the acclaimed “g” and laid in her concepts. Working on an update, Microsoft tried to consider the comments of the critics and made every effort to implement in product innovation, able to convince the owners of computers with previous versions of Windows in need of an upgrade. The company has returned to the “start” button, improved standard applications and have improved the interface of the platform. Internet Explorer was updated to version 11, has been significantly expanded opportunities of synchronization of settings and other user data through deeper integration synchronization with the cloud service SkyDrive. Did not remain without attention of the programmers and other system components, including improvements to power management, to ensure prolongation of the battery life of portable computing devices with the new processors Intel Haswell.
Microsoft have great hopes for the new, inconsistent interaction of standard and tile interfaces, which is still accepted by many users up in arms. According to the analytical company Net Applications, the share of Windows 8 in the operating system market for personal computers is approximately 6.6 percent. On this indicator it is significantly inferior to not only the tried and proven Windows 7 with 46.6% of the market, but also released in 2001 Windows XP (31.2 per cent). The market is coldly greeted by the “eight”, and in order to somehow improve the statistical performance, redmonkey giant intends to almost double the cost of the advancement of their offspring. Let’s see how successful this move will be in the future.
In 2013, Microsoft had to be lighted and in other segments of the software market. The company began selling packages of office applications Office 2013 and Office 365, gave an update GDR3 for Windows Phone 8, has released a new version of the flagship development environment and lifecycle management software solutions Visual Studio 2013, announced the availability of a business audience Dynamics CRM 2013 and the release of a unified cloud platform Cloud OS, including Windows Azure, Windows Server, System Center, SQL Server, and other infrastructure products and services on the corporate level. The magnitude of work done by Microsoft is really impressive, and there is nothing surprising in the fact that the company from year to year, occupies leading positions in our final reports.
No less shock in the past year the work Apple has pleased fans of their products updated operating system Mac OS X 10.9 Mavericks and iOS 7. Platform for desktop or laptop computers have received over two hundred new features and improvements. The new OS has got improved multi-monitor support, and innovative technology Timer Coalescing, App Nap and Compressed Memory, providing enhanced performance and more efficient use of battery of laptops. In OS X 10.9 includes updated Safari browser, tools iBooks for e-books, polished to a Shine calendar, Maps and other software solutions have undergone cosmetic and functional improvements. Along with the release of Mavericks, the company has revised its policy on the global distribution of updates for the desktop platform and invited Mac users to preupgrades to the new OS absolutely for free. Previously, such a pleasure to the owners of “Apple” PC’s and laptops had to pay about $ 30.
IOS 7 also has undergone many improvements. The specialists of the company from Cupertino has redesigned the interface of the system, added new controls and a mechanism to automatically update installed applications, introduced a series of enhancements to the web browser Safari, an intelligent system Siri and other software components. The main engineering changes in iOS 7 were the development of multi-tasking (for third party developers had the opportunity to use the respective functions for the implementation of applications in the background) and supports AirDrop for quick and easy exchange of data at close range through a secure channel Wi-Fi. Presented by the novelty was to the taste to owners of iOS-devices: just over a month after the release of the update to the latest version of the platform went 73% of users. For comparison: a year earlier for the same 30-day iOS 6 was able to reach only a share of 61%.
Since we are talking about mobile OS, it would be logical to recall the release of Android 4.4 KitKat and the announcement of the Ubuntu Touch platform, the first portable devices which are expected to be released in the coming year. The new version of “Android” have been processing a series of controls and code optimization, which allowed the system to run smooth on even budget smartphone with mediocre specifications. Android 4.4 has a better voice assistant and messenger Hangouts, support for Bluetooth MAP, Chromecast and cloud printer, new open architecture for NFC payments, the ability to run applications in a sandbox Security-Enhanced Linux and other-other additional functions, about which we talked in detail. According to experts, the KitKat release is a significant step forward in reducing fragmentation issues for Android devices- the OS can run on a huge spectrum of old and new machines, also used in watches, electronic glasses and other wearable electronics. This is a clear attempt by Google to unify its product.
In the same direction works supervising the project Ubuntu Touch Canonical, the company developing the idea of combining desktop and mobile environments and create a single software platform for different class of devices. In the development of the company’s Ubuntu Touch is put the desktop version of Ubuntu modified for portable devices interface. Special feature are the advanced mechanisms of synchronization of user data between different computers and gadgets, an integrated app store Software Center and the ability to obtain a full workstation when you connect to smartphone or tablet on Ubuntu Touch, keyboard, mouse, monitor and other peripheral equipment. The initiative Canonical looks pretty interesting, and it is hoped that the company would still be able to bring his ambitious project to implementation.
A highly successful 2013 was for software open source, in particular for the Linux platform and is built on the basis of its derived distributions. The system not only has strengthened its position in mobile and enterprise segment, but succeeded on the market of infotainment systems for the automotive sector. According to IHS Automotive, by 2020, the number used in the automotive field Linux platforms will exceed the figure of 53.7 million For comparison: today the figure is only 1 million is Expected to be rapid breakthrough will allow Linux to leave behind their main rivals Microsoft and QNX from Blackberry. An equally bright event for the platform was the IBM statement of intention to invest a large sum of money in the development of the Linux operating system and related software with open source. The Corporation will invest one billion U.S. dollars in the optimization and improvement of the OS, and open source products for their more effective use on server platforms Power Systems. In addition, IBM has opened a new Linux center and announced plans to deploy a special cloud platform for developers on the basis of server Power, which will help partners and customers in the implementation of various Linux projects.
The browser market any major changes in the past year did not happen, with the exception that the transition Opera on WebKit and ending the development of its own Presto rendering engine that was used in the Norwegian product beginning with the seventh version. As before, the leading position in this segment firmly holds Google Chrome (42% of the market, according to StatCounter), the second position appears in Internet Explorer (27,3%), the third browser Firefox, which give preference to 18.2% of Internet users in the world. In the Russian segment of a Network the balance of power in the browser market is somewhat different: in the first place is Chrome c 39.6 percent of the audience, the second Firefox (19,6%) and closes the top three favorites to develop Microsoft (15,2%). With the constant decline of the popularity of IE, Firefox from domestic users and dynamic growth of admirers of “Yandex.Browser” there is every reason to believe that in 2014 the Russian market of web browsers will undergo significant changes. We will remind, the first version of “Yandex.Browser” for Windows and Mac OS was released in October 2012. In the summer of 2013 appeared mobile build apps for Android smartphones and Apple’s iPad in the fall for iPhone and Android-based tablets. Now the weekly audience of the “big” version of the Explorer in Russia is over 7 million users (according to Yandex), mobile — more than 1 million Impressive performance.
People of creative professions who work with software solutions from Adobe Systems, the past year was memorable for the launch in Russia of the Creative Cloud and the transition to the delivery model of Photoshop, Lightroom, Illustrator and other products on subscription. Access to the cloud allowed Adobe Systems empower collaboration in your applications and the rapid deployment of new jobs, to offer functions of centralized administration and license management, as well as access to the cloud storage of the large volume and the means of synchronizing data in different devices. All this had a positive effect on the number of subscribers of Creative Cloud, growth dynamics of which was overshadowed by the message about hackers breaking 150 million user accounts to Adobe IDs and attacker access to the source code of several software products including Acrobat, ColdFusion and Photoshop. According to experts in information security, error Adobe Systems was that the company used a too simple method of password encryption and not paid due attention to the protection of their online services.
It is important to note that Adobe Systems was not the only software company that fall under the scope of cyber criminals and subjected to targeted attacks. Conducted by specialists of “Kaspersky Lab” research has revealed a number of trends that indicate a growing cybercriminal interest groups involved in the development of the organizations and increase the number associated with the source code theft incident. Abduction of this kind of data allows an attacker to identify existing vulnerabilities in the software and also modify it and add malicious code. That is why in 2014 the experts on IT security expect a surge in attacks on the producers of software products. Thus, the probability that the particular risk will be the creators of mobile applications.
In addition to high-profile hacks and the increasing number of cyber incidents, the year 2013 brought many bitter disappointments to put an end to the development of interesting software solutions. Minimize the Microsoft support Skype for Windows Phone 7, Nokia’s denial of the further improvement of the once popular Symbian platform, the freezing of the project of Mozilla porting Firefox to iOS, Opera Software write-off in breakage of many beloved Opera line 12.xx, the demise of the legendary player Winamp with more than 15 years of history — this is not a complete list included in the history of products, the fate of which was decided in the revision of the developers business plans and adjust strategic priorities.
These are the key events of the past year in the software industry, which is one of the fastest growing IT industries in the world and in Russia. According to forecasts of the Ministry of economic development of the Russian Federation, the market of software in the country under favorable circumstances to 2020 will reach 582,5 billion, and by 2030 will exceed 2 trillion roubles (for comparison: in 2011, the volume of the said market was approximately 132,1 billion). The total volume of Russian IT market is expected after 16 years to reach the impressive figure 5.6 trillion! It is assumed that the volume growth of the market of information technologies will contribute to the establishment in Russia of technoparks in sphere of high technologies, the introduction of supercomputers and GRID-technologies, development of cloud computing and the provision of public services in electronic form. A significant role to play in improving the legislative base and reducing the tax burden for working in the field of innovation of companies increasing use of modern technologies by government entities and private entities, as well as increase export of Russian IT products and services. Prospects appear rosy, and thus there’s quite a bit of loud premieres and interesting in the software industry, abreast of developments which we will try to keep continue. Stay tuned and “stay tuned”!