Most of the windsurfers talk about their board and less about the sail.
Kitesurfers mainly talk about the wing (and safety).
It's a world of difference. Apparently the board is less important at this moment of time for kitesurfers.
Moreover there is still the rivalling systems: foils with bladders versus ramair wings versus ramair with bladders.
In the ned the simpliest and most reliable technology will survive. Independent of marketing and famous people (e.g. Naish) who use one type or another type.
I think that Wind and Kitesurfing have the same development. Only that the development is much faster with the kitestuff, because the experiences of the windsurf stuff can be used for kitesurfing. And the technologies for developments (e.g. computers) became better. What happend in 5 years with windsurfing happens with kitesurfing within 2 years or even less. We are living in a fast world.
I've been windsurfing for nearly 4 years and kitesurfing for nearly 2 years.
I find that windsurfing is still a great addition in the higher winds.
I've got some small sails and some small boards that I use in violent winds. At the moment my kite gear isn't that able to handle wind over 25 knots so when the vicious squalls come I've got my windsurfing gear ready.
I don't windsurf much in anything under 20 knots.
As for gear... with windsurfing I tend to focus on boards and sails equally. My boards are pretty old and heavy but they go well when it's real windy.
As for kitesurfing.... Currently I find the kites are what I change the most. I've kept my boards stock for quite a while now and don't have any immediate plans on replacing them.
My 7.5m AR5 is a pretty radicial kite for those strong winds but with a more docile kite high wind kitesurfing will become more accessable.... seriously thinking about getting an 8m AERO for 25 knot action. I may then phase out my windsurfing and confine it to the beyond wild stuff.
The kites now are getting really good and the next thing may be a combo of windsurfing and kitesurfing.... by using VERY short lines so that the kite acts like a windsurfing sail..... see the new post...