Hopefully they'll soon realize that when people are happy with the functionality of their OS, they're really not all that interested in replacing it on someone else's arbitrary release cycle. The "Ok, it's been three years and we need some more money" routine is pretty ineffective with folks keeping their PCs for 4 or 8 or sometimes 12 years.
Microsoft continues to bank on the idea that because they make something newer and shinier, people will flock to it just for the sake of newness and they keep falling on their faces because the new thing doesn't do the job that people need it to do substantially better than the product it's replacing. This is doubly true with their Office suite; Office '97 is a perfectly usable product with at least 90% of the functionality of its successors, obsoleted only by OS compatibility problems (OS's by the very company that released it no less) and it's less-than-modern UI. WinXP CONTINUES to live on and be useful to people even after three subsequent OS releases, and I suspect it will continue even after MS "pulls the plug". It does a job and it does it well, and Microsoft needs to get it through their thick marketing and sales departments that THAT is why people buy a product.
I really think instead of churning out new shit that nobody asked for, Microsoft should take a good hard look at who their user base is and consider more of an LTS, or maybe a rolling release model. I don't think I have a single business client who wouldn't pay twice or thrice as much for an OS/Office Suite/etc. if it would last 10-20 years. As it is, they all seem resigned to the idea that their stuff needs to be replaced every 5 years at the most, and that is an complete myth.
ZDNet's inflammatory, attention-whoring headline has some truth to it...