I often wondered what would it take for Linux to completely win over Windows aficionados. I admit I have not fully immersed myself into Linux yet, but reading ahead on the experience of others I can imagine Ubuntu is on par with Windows as far as the average user's experience is concerned. Yes, there are still concerns about open-source support reliability and security, real or imagined. That aside, what would it take for a typical home user to switch OS?
I believe the most important deciding factor for a would-be convert is SPEED. Of course stability is important, but that has come to be expected of any new software. Speed is what will make people go through the psychological barrier of adopting a different OS. I want reduced boot up time. I want fast browsing speed (without upgrading my PC). I want nifty click actions. The battle between Windows and other OS's will not be whether there are more software developers for Windows than there are for Linux. After all, Linux offers all the usual applications with the ease-of-use that is expected of everyone: browser, email, word processor, spreadsheet, presentation, media player, audio, video, and picture editing, etc. More development of the same applications would not make much difference to an average user; a FASTER application would. (Watch how Asus is set to conquer market share with their instant-on "Splashtop" stripped down version of Linux built into the motherboard)