National Instruments helps engineers and scientists make sense of the world around them by allowing them to interpret massive quantities of data that they encounter in their jobs every day. We understand the value of data, and we use data to make many of our technology decisions.
In 2012, NI announced the inclusion of a new tool in LabVIEW, the Customer Experience Improvement Program. The data provided by this opt-in tool allow NI to better understand general usage patterns and trends with NI software and hardware. We can then use these data to provide better technical support and to more efficiently deliver information on service entitlements and product changes. When combined with a number of other data sets, it can also help us make decisions about product direction.
In the coming months, Microsoft will be ending extended support for the Windows XP operating system. The decade-old OS has given way to Windows 7, released in 2009, as the dominant OS in the general marketplace.
Our customers tend to have longer timelines than consumer or general business applications for OS support. To determine the right timeline for moving Windows XP off full support for NI as a company, we turned to data.
Using several different data sets, including the Customer Experience Improvement Program, Update Service, web traffic, and service requests, NI gathered a clear picture of the typical lifecycle of an OS among our customers. For example, we learned that while Windows 7 was released in the summer of 2009 to highly favorable reviews, it took approximately two years before Windows 7 surpassed Windows XP as the dominant operating system for our customer base. Since that point, XP has continued to decline asymptotically. Interestingly, Windows 8 and 8.1 appear poised to overcome Windows XP within the next few months.
With all of these data, NI made the decision to end support for Windows XP and Vista in 2016.
As we look forward, there are fascinating questions on the horizon regarding the bitness of OSs. For example, Windows 7 32-bit was recently passed by Windows 7 64-bit to take the lead among all OSs that customers use. Also, Windows 8 32-bit barely registers as a blip on the charts compared to the footprint of the 64-bit variety.
There are a lot of decisions to be made in the coming years on all these points and more. You can make sure your data are included in these sets and your use cases are represented by turning on the Customer Experience Improvement Program in LabVIEW.
LabVIEW makes Customer Experience Improvement Program options available from the Help menu. You can also navigate from the Windows Start Menu to All Programs»National Instruments»Customer Experience Improvement Program. Choose Yes, I want to participate in the NI Customer Experience Improvement Program and select OK.