Short bio: Computer Scientist, FOSS supporter (read more)
Tux Machines (TM)-specific
Everyone is always so fixated on desktop Linux and why it can't get decent numbers in the desktop market.
The answer is obvious. You can't come late into the game when someone has a huge installed base and expect to win based on free over easy.
Because that what the desktop battle is (not really a battle, by the way). It's low cost versus "here, let me do that for you" that MS provides it's already huge pre-installed base.
You will never win that battle and to prove it, Linux can't even get a firm foot in the door.
Where does Linux kick butt? in those places where it was in place to take advantage of a more "fair" or open market. Servers and appliances are the top two areas where Linux just blows the competition out of the water.
Guess what? The desktop is fading away. Do you know what's coming to replace them? That's right, appliances. Small footprint hardware devices that take up little space and ask the user to just get in and do their thing. No worry about config and setup. Plug and Play baby. Linux can not only compete in this area, it can dominate.
It has already shown that it can in the realm of small form factor devices and appliances already in use in the business world.
Look at the possibilities of affordable computing on small form factor in the consumer market. Raspberry Pi has made a huge splash and that is only the beginning.
Mark my words, the desktop of the near future will be an appliance. The average home user doesn't give a rat's patoot what the OS is as long it it can do those things they want to do with all the flash and pomp to make it a disney-like magical experience.
As a matter of fact, it won't even be one appliance. it will be several. They will be small devices that have specific functions in different parts of the house for different purposes. IPV6 is coming and home networking among all these devices will be seamless, making them all seem to work together as one large home system.
it will be like the component stereo. People will be able to put together the home computer system that fits their needs/wants.
One device to take care of web surfing and general "computing". Another device to handle the kitchen appliances like refrigerators and ovens and everything. They will all be able to work together.
What OS is poised to make that all work without a hitch? Linux is.
Which OS offers the stability and affordability to make that work? Linux does.
Linux can;t flub this. huge corporations that have everything to lose will do anything they can, legal, illegal, right or wrong, in order to be the OS that takes that next step.
Look at MS right now with it's "we love Linux" (make faces behind Linux's back) games they are playing.
Look at how they are playing the UEFI card. Take a look at how they are playing the IE game on ARM based. They are gearing up to keep everyone else out.
The next few short years are going to be interesting. Will Linux be ready to take advantage of things, or will it miss the bus?