Microsoft’s early masterstroke was to have locked down the distribution. Once they succeeded in that, it was easier for them to push their products to users. With the change in the distribution model, Windows strongest advantage started to wither, resulting in the current (identity?) crisis it faces. People got Windows while looking for PCs, they didn’t care about Windows otherwise. OEMs cared about Windows, mostly because they’d not be successful in the market. There was a time when relevance was driven by the distribution model, mostly powered by the OEMs. The Internet provided the first major blow to that model. The rise in mobile computing on smart devices provided a second major blow to the OEM model.