SimonC>As for the VA customers apparently vanishing, have you any evidence at all that they have been coaxed over because of it?
Yes, VA outsold Iyonix (VA has claimed they've sold 3,000 copies I strongly suspect that Castle haven't quite managed that), yet Iyonix users outnumbered those in the Drobe survey who claimed to use VA. Hence VA users seemed to respond less frequently than Iyonix users either (a). Because they weren't interested (e.g., at the level of replying) or (b). had left the platform. You can take your pick of which but either I would argue would *not* be good for the RISC OS platform (the latter obviously more so...).
SimonC>If they've bought VA, then found Windows better, surely that's RISC OS's and the hardware's fault for not being good enough?
You could extend that argument to Linux as well. But the trouble is there are a variety of reasons for people using Windows - not least are (a). Closed proprietary formats unavailable on other platforms (or incompletely implemented on these) (b). Use of DRM that is specifically intended to work only on Windows. Both (a) and (b) are - it could be argued - levers used by Microsoft to "beat" all comers - by having rigid control of these standards and DRM and denying these to other platforms *all* other platforms appear to be "inadequate". If such formats and DRM algorithms (ignoring the rights and wrongs of the latter for the moment) were available on other platforms it would "level" up the playing field. VA was a "thin end of the wedge" to soften the blow of moving to Windows - once there the propretary lock ins and inconvience of having to convert between RO and Windows systems would do the rest. This is *not* the fault of the RISC OS platform - but rather the brilliant skill of Microsoft. Any platform (RISC OS and Linux included) have a tough fight on their hands when dealing with Windows... and in RISC OS's case this is not helped by making it an "emulated" extension to the Windows platform.
IMHO if RISC OS simply becomes an "emulation" running on Windows and Linux then I believe I'd have little interest in continuing to use it, just in the same way as I've long lost interest in using the BBC emulator on my RISC OS machine.