And again, you have the spectre of WINE. Best possible outcome for a dev: The Linux people who want the software can buy the Windows version, run it through Wine, and best of all, they're not required to spend money to support it, because its an "unsupported config". Spares the hassle of having to ensure the linux version works across all the major distros/kernel versions/desktop environments (and so on and so on).
It does. On a Windows PC, how many free antivirus SW suites are better then Norton? Probably at least a dozen. But if even 1/100 people purchase paid antivirus, and 1/100 of those purchase Norton, Norton will end up with quite the profit at the end of the day.Well, market share and advertising dollars is a valid argument. Your previous statement of "I don't develope for linux because I can't compete with free" has nothing to do with market share.
On linux...not so much. Especially since the users who use linux in the first place would be even more apt to use free software if available.
So combine fewer overall users and the fact that most users will be more likely to go with free software compared to PC users, and you end up with a VERY limited area where you can really cost justify software development and still have the expectation to make a profit. And most of those areas are already filled.
In my opinion, the major linux devs need to have a sit down and figure out what Linux wants to be. Then figure out all the interfaces to the OS [I should have one way to do audio/video/whatever, regardless of what environments/kernels/whatever the user decides to use], get basic drivers working for the majority of all devices that are supported in Windows [and I don't mean with a reduced feature set/performance], then give me a compiler with good performance AND is easy to develop with [GCC is horrid in this regard; developers like me who grew up with MSVC have VERY high standards], and then maybe linux for the desktop will start going somewhere. When I see Linux right now, I see an OS without any direction, just milling about and trying to stay up to date without really advancing anywhere in particular.