Vaporware

vapourwareannouncing nonexistent productsannouncing products that never appearedbut never releasedcancelled during developmentnever publishednever releasednever shippedno recent informationnon-existent product
In the computer industry, vaporware (or vapourware) is a product, typically computer hardware or software, that is announced to the general public but is never actually manufactured nor officially cancelled.wikipedia
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Customer switching

brand switchingConsumer switchingSerial switcher
Developers have been accused of intentionally promoting vaporware to keep customers from switching to competing products that offer more features.
Another approach is the advertisement of vaporware that seemingly will offer newer or better features than established products without actually possessing any innovation.

Xenix

SCO XenixMS-XenixTrusted Xenix
"Vaporware" was coined by a Microsoft engineer in 1982 to describe the company's Xenix operating system and first appeared in print in a newsletter by entrepreneur Esther Dyson in 1983. Ann Winblad, president of Open Systems Accounting Software, wanted to know if Microsoft planned to stop developing its Xenix operating system as some of Open System's products depended on it.
The decision was not immediately transparent, which led to the term vaporware.

Duke Nukem Forever

DNFDuke Nukem syndrome
When 3D Realms first announced Duke Nukem Forever in 1997, the video game was early in its development.
Duke Nukem Forever was originally announced in 1997 as the follow up to Duke Nukem 3D, but became a notable example of vaporware due to its severely protracted development schedule, which saw the game being delayed numerous times and had 3D Realms, which was being underfunded and laying off staff in 2009, become involved in a lawsuit with publisher Take-Two Interactive.

Ashton-Tate

Ashton Tate
Software company Ashton-Tate was ready to release dBase IV, but pushed the release date back to add support for SQL.
After a number of such vaporware announcements, the third-party developers started becoming upset.

Ovation Technologies

OvationOvation (software)Ovation office suite
Vaporware first implied intentional fraud when it was applied to the Ovation office suite in 1983; the suite's demonstration was well received by the press, but the product was never released.
Ovation's most enduring claim to fame may be as what is considered by many to be the industry's "most notorious" example of vaporware.

Fear, uncertainty, and doubt

fear, uncertainty and doubtFUDmisleading
In addition to the "vaporware" label, this is also called "ambush marketing", and "fear, uncertainty and doubt" (FUD) by the press.
In 1996, Caldera, Inc. accused Microsoft of several anti-competitive practices, including issuing vaporware announcements, creating FUD, and excluding competitors from participating in beta-test programs in order to destroy competition in the DOS market.

Vector W8

W8
Car manufacturer General Motors' plans to develop and sell an electric car were called vaporware by an advocacy group in 2008 and Car and Driver magazine retroactively described the Vector W8 supercar as vaporware in 2017.
In a 2017 article, the magazine noted that the Vector W8 serves as an example of why they don't believe manufacturer's claims about a vehicle without testing it themselves and described the W8 as "vaporware".

Wired (magazine)

WiredWired MagazineWired News
As personal computer hardware speeds improved at a rapid pace in the late 1990s, it created an "arms race" between companies in the video game industry, according to Wired News.
The magazine coined the term crowdsourcing, as well as its annual tradition of handing out Vaporware Awards, which recognize "products, videogames, and other nerdy tidbits pitched, promised and hyped, but never delivered".

List of vaporware

Vaporware
Vaporware is a product which is announced and/or being developed, but never released, nor ever cancelled.

Westwood Studios

Westwood AssociatesWestwoodVQA
In the 1980s, video game maker Westwood Studios was known for shipping products late, but by 1993 it had so improved that, Computer Gaming World reported, "many publishers would assure [us] that a project was going to be completed on time because Westwood was doing it".
The company in the late 1980s was known for shipping products late, but by 1993 it had so improved that, Computer Gaming World reported, "many publishers would assure [us] that a project was going to be completed on time because Westwood was doing it".

Joe Mohen

In his 1989 Network World article, Joe Mohen wrote the practice had become a "vaporware epidemic", and blamed the press for not investigating claims by developers.
Mohen also was a contributing editor and columnist for PC Week (now eWeek), Data Communications Magazine, and Network World; in 1989, he wrote a widely quoted article, called "Seeking a Cure for the Vaporware Epidemic", writing "my own estimate is that at the time of announcement, 10% of software products don't actually exist ... Vendors that are unwilling to [prove it exists] shouldn't announce their packages to the press", blaming the press for not investigating claims by developers, saying "If the pharmaceutical industry were this careless, I could announce a cure for cancer today – to a believing press."

PC Gamer

PC Gamer USPC Gamer UKPCGamer
However, due to a 13-year period of anticipations and poor storyline, the game had primarily extremely negative reviews, except for PC Gamer, who gave it 80/100.
The Coconut Monkey is often used to parody vaporware by advertising the unreleased game Gravy Trader, which has been given a 101% score on some of the review disks.

List of commercial failures in video gaming

commercial failuredigiBlastcommercial failures
Duke Nukem Forever was an entry in the successful Duke Nukem series, initially announced in 1997, but spent fifteen years in development, and was frequently listed as a piece of vaporware video game software.

Development hell

development limbodevelopmentproduction hell

Computer hardware

hardwarepersonal computer hardwaredevice
In the computer industry, vaporware (or vapourware) is a product, typically computer hardware or software, that is announced to the general public but is never actually manufactured nor officially cancelled.

Software

Computer softwareSoftware & Programmingsoftware technology
In the computer industry, vaporware (or vapourware) is a product, typically computer hardware or software, that is announced to the general public but is never actually manufactured nor officially cancelled.

International Data Group

IDGNetwork WorldIDG Books
Network World magazine called vaporware an "epidemic" in 1989 and blamed the press for not investigating whether developers' claims were true.

Competition law

antitrustantitrust lawanti-trust
The United States accused several companies of announcing vaporware early enough to violate antitrust laws, but few have been found guilty.

Microsoft

Microsoft CorporationMicrosoft Corp.MS
"Vaporware" was coined by a Microsoft engineer in 1982 to describe the company's Xenix operating system and first appeared in print in a newsletter by entrepreneur Esther Dyson in 1983.

Esther Dyson

Release 1.0Dyson, EstherEsther
"Vaporware" was coined by a Microsoft engineer in 1982 to describe the company's Xenix operating system and first appeared in print in a newsletter by entrepreneur Esther Dyson in 1983.

InfoWorld

InfoWorld magazineInfoWorld.comIntelligent Machines Journal
InfoWorld magazine editor Stewart Alsop helped popularize it by lampooning Bill Gates with a Golden Vaporware award for the late release of his company's first version of Windows in 1985.

Stewart Alsop II

Stewart Alsop Stewart IIStewart Alsop, Jr.
InfoWorld magazine editor Stewart Alsop helped popularize it by lampooning Bill Gates with a Golden Vaporware award for the late release of his company's first version of Windows in 1985.

Bill Gates

BillWilliam H. GatesGates
InfoWorld magazine editor Stewart Alsop helped popularize it by lampooning Bill Gates with a Golden Vaporware award for the late release of his company's first version of Windows in 1985.

Windows 1.0

1.01WindowsWindows 1.x
InfoWorld magazine editor Stewart Alsop helped popularize it by lampooning Bill Gates with a Golden Vaporware award for the late release of his company's first version of Windows in 1985.

Ann Winblad

Hummer Winblad
Ann Winblad, president of Open Systems Accounting Software, wanted to know if Microsoft planned to stop developing its Xenix operating system as some of Open System's products depended on it.