Microsoft has a real chance here, as long as Ballmer is patient & gives the OS a chance. There is real potential here. There were too many missed opportunities missed at MS partly due to impatience, partly to do with bad decision making & other variables.
The developers of Windows 8 has worked hard to bring a lightweight OS to the market, it looked like Windows 7 was going to be it. While Windows 7 is very successful, it's not for the mobile market. It's a fantastic workhorse OS for a mid to high spec notebook or PC (as Windows always has been for the last 15 years), but the low spec (a lot of mobile) computing devices needs a "lite" OS. This looks to be it, or at least the turnaround point.
Now, it's going to be up to us, the consumers, to adapt to & like it, and bring some of the competition over our way. And MS's marketing team has their work cut out for them. It can be done, reversing the sliding in the mobile market. It's just going to take some time, but not too much. The competition's number's are racking up at a fast pace. MS is going to have to work fast, but not panic. Remember, MS has a large majority of home/business/Office computing OS's, that much is in their favor.
It would be fantasy to think that any OS produced by anyone could shift the balance overnight, but MS has to grab some of the share, and soon. This is their best shot, by far, to do so.
Meanwhile, I'm starting to get used to the Metro UI. Although I despised it at first, after some hunting down tips, I'm catching on. Hopefully, something that will resemble a Start Menu will emerge for PC's and larger notebooks. This one article helped me a lot. You really have to read it all to understand, as there's some rants there, but some help & hope as well: The Four Corners. AnandTech - Windows 8 Consumer Preview: The Four Corners
There's some good reading here. For those who are not content or don't understand the new look, this can begin to open some eyes (and hopefully) minds.