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Windows 7 had more than 10 times the usage at this point in its lifecycle

Three weeks after its 2009 launch, Windows 7 had seized 4 percent of the operating system (OS) market, and would go on to become the fastest selling OS in Microsoft Corp.'s (MSFT) history.  Three years later and Microsoft has another release -- Windows 8.  But some signs point to the operating system as being a sales bust, early on.

Microsoft had bragged weeks ago that it had sold 40 million licenses, a number that it said surpassed sales of Windows 7 for an equivalent period in 2009.  But some complained that license sales were not actual device sales; they cite reports of Windows 8 computers languishing on store shelves.

Now the critics have ammo to back those claims. Market research group Net Applications, a research service that tracks traffic across 8,000 affiliates' sites and 3 million registered users, reports that Windows 8 at the end of December accounted for a mere 1.72 percent of traffic.  

In other words, after two months Windows 8 appears to have about a third of market share Windows 7 garnered in less than one month.  By two months into its lifecycle, Windows 7 has soared to 21 percent of the market's traffic (Windows 7 is now the top PC OS with 45 percent of traffic).
 
Windows 8 Surface
Windows 8's adoption pace appears to be more sluggish than Windows Vista's.
[Image Source: Microsoft]

Windows 8's numbers look more like those of Windows Vista -- but even a bit worse.  Vista posted about 2.2 percent of the total traffic at the same 2-month point, about a third more than Windows 8's percentage [source].

Merle McIntosh, a product manager SVP at top online computer retailer Newegg, was cautious in his criticism, confirming that Windows 8 "did not explode" onto the market. But he remains hopeful, noting that sales have been slowly creeping upward.

Windows 8 is an incredibly bold redesign on the part on Microsoft.  While, the move to a more touch-friendlygraphically rich operating system certainly mirrors the general direction of the device market, but that has done little to shield Microsoft from loads of criticism. Many have wondered whether it went too far with the graphical gloss, whether it was disrespecting developers with its shift to a walled-garden "Windows Store" app distribution model, and whether it was forsaking traditional desktop power users.

So will Windows 8 be the next Vista sales wise?  The critics certainly would say so.  But at this point it's kind of early to say; about all that's safe to say is that the picture might not be as rosy as Microsoft wanted you to believe.

Sources: Net Applications, ComputerWorld, ReadWriteWeb



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RE: The only thing that interests me in Windows 8
By kleinma on 1/4/2013 1:39:22 PM , Rating: 0
It isn't a cell phone UI. I have Windows 8 on a non touch system at home. I have been using it since betas and now I am on RTM. I am in the start screen maybe 30 seconds per day. Everything else I do, I get done on the desktop, and never, ever have any need to go into the start screen unless I want to run some metro app.

Windows 8 is a hybrid of a touch interface for when you want it and where it makes sense, and the traditional desktop interface for when that is where you need to work.

They need to merge the desktop and metro task switching, so that it does not look at the desktop and desktop apps that are running as a single entity, but that is probably my most critical complaint at this point.

Windows 8 actually works pretty well without touch. I really don't know why everyone claims to have such a hard time with it, but I really believe those people have not actually used it. When I say "use" I mean more than play with it for a few minutes. I mean actually try to see what changed, why it changed, and setup the machine how it really should be (pinned programs in the desktop taskbar, organized start screen with labeled named groups, etc..)


RE: The only thing that interests me in Windows 8
By Motoman on 1/4/2013 1:53:42 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Windows 8 is a hybrid of a touch interface for when you want it and where it makes sense, and the traditional desktop interface for when that is where you need to work.


No it isn't. You're trying to put lipstick on a pig.

You know where the "touch interface" is wanted, and makes sense, on a desktop/laptop? Nowhere.


By kleinma on 1/4/2013 2:30:31 PM , Rating: 1
Have you used a gesture touchpad/trackpad with it? That works quite well on a laptop. I will admit I have not tried any of the standalone ones for the desktop, so I don't know how they perform.


By dubldwn on 1/4/2013 2:00:59 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
Everything else I do, I get done on the desktop, and never, ever have any need to go into the start screen unless I want to run some metro app.

Yeah that’s the trick. Then why is it there? How about I start up my rig and am greeted with a professional looking desktop that’s used by an adult and not some kiddy BS that looks like Fisher Price puked up a juice box. They want some of that app store money and I’m not buying it.

And I had Win8 on my test rig from Feb/Mar to Nov and I’m back with 7.


RE: The only thing that interests me in Windows 8
By twhittet on 1/4/2013 2:03:37 PM , Rating: 5
This coming from a troll of Windows 8 UI.

Everytime I see someone voice their opinion about the interface, I see you saying "I really don't know why everyone claims to have such a hard time with it, but I really believe those people have not actually used it."

We think it sux. We have used it for months. We have used it as primary systems, we have used it on laptops, we have used it as HTPCs. So we HAVE used it, and you just like to assume EVERYONE who ever complaints about it is stupid and/or "have not actually used it".

The sales numbers and general opinions tell a clear picture - people do not like the UI. So stop pretending they don't just because you are in love with it.


RE: The only thing that interests me in Windows 8
By kleinma on 1/4/2013 2:14:48 PM , Rating: 1
I just don't understand why everyone cries soooo much about the start screen. All it did was replace the start menu. Were you that in love with the start menu from windows? Did you really spend a good portion of your day in the start menu launching programs? I think Windows 8 is far from perfect, I just think people tend to bitch about things just to bitch about them. Ohhh no, they made the start menu full screen, the sky is falling!!!



By cyberguyz on 1/4/2013 4:22:27 PM , Rating: 5
If it were just the start screen, I would still be using it. They also f**ked uup the actual desktop as well.

I have a registered copy of Windows 8. I also have access to it via my MSDN subscription. I've used it for months and have found that i just simply hate it. Why did I have the top version of Windows 8 available and still have to PAY MICROSOFT EVEN MORE for Media Center? Seriously?

This was written on my Desktop PC running Windows 7 x64 Ultimate. The Windows 8 DVD sits in a corner with all the other dvds full of lame software that I will never use again.

No some will love the WIndows 8 UI. But the rest of us are voting wioth our wallets and telling Microsoft in no uncertain terms that we are not impressed with the latest incarnation of their operating system.


By cyberguyz on 1/4/2013 4:23:57 PM , Rating: 2
and as you can see- I can't type worth a sh!t.


RE: The only thing that interests me in Windows 8
By kleinma on 1/4/2013 7:15:21 PM , Rating: 2
If you are going to say something like "They also f**ked uup the actual desktop as well." then you could at least elaborate on what you mean. Minus a start button, my desktop is exactly the same as the windows 7 one.


RE: The only thing that interests me in Windows 8
By althaz on 1/5/2013 3:15:42 AM , Rating: 2
That's demonstrably not true. Windows 8 adds back the "Up" button in the File Explorer, adds very useful backup features, it's faster and more responsive, it starts up quicker, it is 1000x times better at copying files (to be fair Windows 7 and earlier were incredibly bad at it), there's (much) improved multi-monitor support, better class-drivers, better cloud integration, more keyboard shortcuts and probably more stuff that I've missed.

As an added bonus the start screen is many times better than the truly crappy start menu. It let's you find your most used programs much more easily than the desktop or start menu ever have, plus as an added bonus every time you launch an app that isn't on your taskbar, you don't lost your entire windows hierarchy.

The Start Screen is also a great place to check if you have any appointments or messages, what the weather is or if there's any updates on Facebook or Twitter. It's optional, but it is actually useful.

Much worse of course is the whole concept of metro apps, the best thing about windows apps is the windows, why can't metro apps support multiple fixed-sizes of window as well as full screen? This is the fundamental flaw of Windows 8, just about everything else about it is actually better.


By overzealot on 1/5/2013 6:08:13 PM , Rating: 5
Nope. I tried using the start screen for a month, then bought Start8.
2 reasons:
- Having to click Desktop on startup to get out of Start Screen (if you could leave it by pressing the Win key I wouldn't have cared).
- I still find it much easier to click things on the Start menu when searching. Dragging the cursor to the bottom left completely (no aim required) then a slight readjustment is a massive gain for mouse users on high resolution desktops. And far less distracting animated tiles to worry about as well.

I used the metro PDF reader for a while, but like all metro apps, it's great until you want to close them. The best way to dismiss them is to just go back to desktop (top left charm) but I really just want to close it. That leaves me with Alt-F4 or dragging from top to bottom - which once again, doesn't work well with a mouse on a high-res desktop, and both of these choices still drops you back at Start Screen.

There's plenty I like about Windows 8, but its insistence on pushing Metro on me is not one of them.


By Sta5h on 1/7/2013 7:11:10 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
(if you could leave it by pressing the Win key I wouldn't have cared).
Err, well I can :D

I completely agree that removing the Start button was a mistake for most users, but really, about 30 seconds training from me has made several over fifties "MS Office" style users completely happy with Windows 8 and commenting on how their desktop/laptop feels faster. This is from in-place *upgrading* their Windows 7 installations.

Agreed on the Metro PDF and Picture viewer apps though, they're pretty terrible IMO.

Seriously, I'm finding very little to dislike about Windows 8 (the operating system) and a lot to like about it.


By hood6558 on 1/7/2013 8:41:37 PM , Rating: 1
I agree with your assessment; Windows 8 is better in enough ways that I'd feel I was missing something if I went back to 7. The start screen UI is useless on a desktop, but easily avoided with Start8 or a simple registry hack. I have a new Z77/i5/SSD system that runs smoother and faster on Windows 8, which was designed purposefully to take advantage of new memory controllers, fast SSDs, CPU architecture, chipset features, etc. I believe it's really the most "mature"
OS available, under the hood. Too bad all most people see is the teenage girl phone UI and instantly decide that it can't be any good in any way. Maybe it had to be done to stay with changing markets, that I can understand. But to not give the choice to eliminate or bypass the blatantly greed-inspired "Metro" and "Windows Store" aspect was a bad mistake. They could have been a hero had they given the choice, and the stupid store and all it's useless "apps" would have to live or die on it's own merits. I looked through a lot of apps trying to find anything worth using, tried 2 radio apps and a wiki app, all crashed or were so slow to load as to render them useless. But to pay money for these useless things would be utter stupidity. They need to separate the mobile side from the desktop side from the enterprise side, just as they have always done. Don't force the desktop team or the enterprise guys to work with kiddy toys.


By cyberguyz on 1/6/2013 11:25:42 AM , Rating: 3
"If you are going to say something like "They also f**ked uup the actual desktop as well." then you could at least elaborate on what you mean. Minus a start button, my desktop is exactly the same as the windows 7 one. "

Are you blind? Where is the Aero theme. For that matter where is ANY desktop theme? What they replaced the Aero theme with is this flat-color with absolutely no character at all. In short they replaced the Aero desktop with Win-7's "lite" desktop and gave you no way to enhance it t all.

Start menu gone. Before you say the Win 8 start menu is soooo much better, realize you have to endure a jarring swap OUT OF the desktop to get to it. Also realize the Win 8 start panel is absoutely desktop UN-friendly.

Win7's start menu is at least still on the desktop. I don't have to LEAVE THE DESKTOP.

Say what you want about the desktop gadgets in Win-7, but I like them and have a system powerful enough to support them. Does Win8 have them? Nope.

What about Media Center? I opted to upgrade Win 7 Ultimate to Win 8 Pro. Guess what, no Media Center. Microsoft now wants you to pay extra for that. Why should I have to? I had it in Win 7 Ulti. When I upgrade Win 7 ulti, i expect that to be upgraded too. I didn't get MORE like I would expect with an upgrade software. I got less!

The start menu and gadgets issues can be resolved by jumping thru some 3rd party hoops. The missing media center can be 'purchased' from microsoft. But why should I have to? Just to get that lame Metro garbage? I don't even like it.

So did Microsoft fuckup the Win 8 desktop? Damn right they did!

Is that elaboration enough for you?


By timothyd97402 on 1/4/2013 4:33:49 PM , Rating: 4
Yes, I really like the start menu. I have two Windows 8 computers and the one I use alot has a 3rd party start menu replacement. It also disables the hot corners and boots me straight to the desktop. I have also set my defaults as much as possible to use desktop programs rather than Metro apps.

I do not use any Metro apps and have no need or desire to do so. I use professional desktop programs exclusively. Why does Microsoft insist that I must be switched over to the Metro UI at any excuse?


By JediJeb on 1/4/2013 7:53:37 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Did you really spend a good portion of your day in the start menu launching programs


I rarely use the Start menu because I do what most hate as much as the Metro interface, I put my shortcut icons on my desktop. I happen to arrange them around the edges where they take up very little space, unlike the metro tiles that take up the whole screen so that I can arrange my working windows stacked around the screen leaving the icons available to open other programs quickly without having to move, minimize or close the others. With large screens it is more efficient to have several programs open and available than having to constantly switch from one to another in full screen mode.

Also I don't really like the live tiles where stuff is always playing even when you are not interested in it. Seems like that would just be wasting processor time and battery life.


By Mike Acker on 1/5/2013 7:55:59 AM , Rating: 2
i've followed this whole brouhaha from the inception of the "Ribbon Menu"

everyone I had to help with it hated it intensely: the presentation of "everything at once" -- as advocated by Julie L-G -- just doesn't work -- for a lot of us .


By Piiman on 1/5/2013 9:46:31 AM , Rating: 2
"I just don't understand why everyone cries soooo much about the start screen. All it did was replace the start menu. Were you that in love with the start menu from windows?"

Dude even you added it? lol


By delphinus100 on 1/6/2013 1:43:21 AM , Rating: 3
quote:
I just don't understand why everyone cries soooo much about the start screen. All it did was replace the start menu.


First, yes I do miss the Start Menu. But...

When I start up a Windows machine, once at the desktop I typically either click an icon to open a program, or an Internet shortcut I've created, to go to a particular site.

Going to the Start Menu is rarely the first thing I do.

So, why would I want to be presented with the Start Menu's 'replacement' every time I boot up the computer?


RE: The only thing that interests me in Windows 8
By 91TTZ on 1/4/2013 2:24:46 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
Windows 8 is a hybrid of a touch interface for when you want it and where it makes sense, and the traditional desktop interface for when that is where you need to work.


I agree, but that's the problem. Microsoft had to make some compromises to incorporate touch features into the OS. The problem is that 99% of the buying public is using it on their non-touch screen desktop or laptop. So those people felt the negative effects of those compromises without being able to experience the positive effects. It was a net-loss to them.

A small fraction of Windows 8 users felt that these compromises were a net-gain to 8's usability, the vast majority felt that they were a net-loss. They decided not to buy the product and now Windows 8's adoption is even slower than the nearly universally reviled Vista.


By timothyd97402 on 1/4/2013 3:46:24 PM , Rating: 5
No, they did not have to compromise. They chose to bastardize the OS by remove options and choices.

Windows Pro should have a choice to turn Metro off, boot to the desktop and have a start menu. Their should be an option to use Aero if we like.

Microsoft removed these choices for one simple reason, to leverage their OS monoply into a share of the phone, tablet and app markets.


By SwampEagle on 1/5/2013 5:04:39 AM , Rating: 2
6


RE: The only thing that interests me in Windows 8
By althaz on 1/5/13, Rating: 0
RE: The only thing that interests me in Windows 8
By boobo on 1/6/2013 8:25:30 PM , Rating: 3
Some things I used the Start menu for, Metro COULD have been a lot better at, but they chose not to.

I used the Start menu to bring up the taskbar during driver (and other installshield) installations. The installers decided that they should have the right to cover the entire screen and make the taskbar inaccessible. With the Start button, I just had to press the Windows key and the taskbar was instantly in the foreground.

Windows 8 could have given me this too, if they had kept the taskbar visible in Metro. It seems so easy and logical! Why would you want to stop multitasking when using apps? They took my Windows-key taskbar popping function and on top of that, they also hide the taskbar while Start-menuing.

Something else I did with the Start menu was organize things.

In the Start Menu's "Programs" I just had 5 folders: Drivers, Office, Programming, Art, and Games. Subfolders guided me to where I wanted to go.
Art->Static->2D->Natural->Corel->P ainter:bunch of icons
Games->Adventure->Point and Click->Detective->GOG->Tex Murphy->2: bunch of icons

The Start menu also let me easily put shortcuts to the same game somewhere inside "Detectives" and also somewhere inside "SciFI".

Windows 8 could have given me this too with something as common and simple as collapsible tiles. Every node based application has had them for years! Not only did they decide that groups could not be collapsed; they also decided to flatten the hierarchy so that now you can't even have 1 subgroup level! The top level groups are the only level of organization and they all have to be visible at once.

I have over 200 games from GOG alone, each with its uninstaller and link to the manual and map, etc. Finding the correct icon in that sea of hundreds of tiles with only one level of organization is not in the same Galaxy as where the Start menu was. I don't even have any Steam games in Start anymore because then it would be thousands, all uncategorized.

So now, unless I remember the name of the executable, I have to search for a game in the Start Screen, in the Steam interface, the Gamefly interface and the Gamestop interface until I find it.

Categorization and a multi-tasking Start Screen that includes the taskbar. Two vital features of the old Start menu that I have trouble living without.


RE: The only thing that interests me in Windows 8
By rsmech on 1/6/2013 11:16:41 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Windows 8 could have given me this too, if they had kept the taskbar visible in Metro. It seems so easy and logical!


Try moving you mouse to the upper left corner in metro and you have open programs. they gave it to you and better. you just missed it.


By boobo on 1/7/2013 4:51:24 PM , Rating: 2
Thank you for your help, friend, but my OS must be broken somehow. I have 5 programs open: Chrome, JimmyRig, Zbrush, Lightwave, and PhotoPaint. In the start screen, I go to the upper left corner and there is only one block that pops up (which looks like a snapshot of my desktop). That is not comparable to the taskbar that has an individual button for every single open program/document (I've set it to "never combine"), so mine must be different from yours or I'm just not getting it.


RE: The only thing that interests me in Windows 8
By rsmech on 1/6/2013 11:19:59 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
In the Start Menu's "Programs" I just had 5 folders: Drivers, Office, Programming, Art, and Games. Subfolders guided me to where I wanted to go.


I'm staring at a file explorer icon lower left windows 8. click it you could have been staring at something very similar to what your talking about. you missed it. I've only had windows 8 for 5 days.


By boobo on 1/7/2013 4:59:58 PM , Rating: 2
Thank you for your valuable advice! However, I never tried to imply that Windows 8 did not have the tools to categorize that way. The post I was replying to said that the >Start Screen< could do everything that the Star menu could (and better). So I tried to limit myself to the problems of the Start Screen itself. Since the file explorer is not technically part of the Start screen, we're actually substituting the Start Screen with something more akin to the old Start menu, when we use the file explorer. The original post said that it was crazy to substitute it with anything. So, I think we agree 100%.


By rsmech on 1/6/2013 11:27:07 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
I have over 200 games from GOG alone, each with its uninstaller and link to the manual and map, etc. Finding the correct icon in that sea of hundreds of tiles with only one level of organization is not in the same Galaxy as where the Start menu was. I don't even have any Steam games in Start anymore because then it would be thousands, all uncategorized.


there is a neat little tile on metro that takes you to desktop. once done there is a nice little file explorer lower left you can set up with any files and sub folders you wish. you can make it as easy or as complex as you want. Metro isn't the best option for every action you want to take, it's just many short cuts in one place. you don't have all your hundreds of games on your windows 7 desktop why would you even complain you can't in Metro. Kind of silly argument. your windows 7 desktop couldn't even hold them.


By rsmech on 1/6/2013 11:30:09 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Categorization and a multi-tasking Start Screen that includes the taskbar. Two vital features of the old Start menu that I have trouble living without.


You can do on desktop file explorer 1 click. you have to organize them just as you organized windows 7 start programs.
Multi-tasking start screen, Metro ui move your mouse to upper left corner.
You don't have to live with out.


By Sta5h on 1/7/2013 7:23:36 AM , Rating: 2
Not being funny, but since you already have Steam installed, why wouldn't you use it for all your games, keeping them entirely out of the start menu?

Uninstalling? Personally, again, I just use the built in Windows uninstaller for that (and Steam for actual Steam games obviously).

The manuals… I guess some games you're going to read them more often (personally I just about never do), but if you *do* already have the shortcuts in your start screen/menu, can't you just start typing the name of the game and you'll see it? I honestly don't see the problem people have with doing this since you must know the name of the app/game you're trying to launch (you don't need to remember the name of the executable if there's a shortcut in the start screen/menu)? I'd honestly like it explained to me.

Don't get me started on Gamestop/Origin (grrr). Honestly, until something else better comes along, and since most of my games are already in there, I just add any non-Steam games right into the Steam interface when I buy them, and then I just go to Steam whenever I want to play a game.


By Wererat on 1/9/2013 5:00:10 PM , Rating: 2
"Art->Static->2D->Natural->Corel->P ainter:bunch of icons
Games->Adventure->Point and Click->Detective->GOG->Tex Murphy->2: bunch of icons"

Really? You moused through six levels of start menu to do ANYthing? This is the justification for why you want to keep a start menu?

Personally I HATE the start menu for just this reason. If I want anything that complex, I'll just bring up the file manager/explorer and go find it already. In addition, MS never mandated an organizational structure for installers, so some programs will try and add a simple "<Name of Program>" shortcut or folder, and others are in love with their company name and will bury the only executable under "<company>/<suite of programs>/<program>" (including Office) so you're several clicks in to just start working.

Sure you CAN reorganize it as you've done in Win95/98/XP/Vista/7, but I could also spend that time finding spare socks, too.

Crud, go build a directory structure like this with all the pointers(shortcuts) at their roots (which is all the vaunted 'start menu' is anyway) and map a tile to its head.


RE: The only thing that interests me in Windows 8
By simsony on 1/5/2013 1:23:37 PM , Rating: 5
I was initially positive about Windows 8, especially with the speed bump but I now find the new UI getting in the way.

I've been using it since launch, my desktop and taskbar is now very cluttered. I cannot switch between apps as easily as Windows 7. I always have to have a hand on the keyboard, it's like using a broken command line interface.

I think if there was a boot to desktop option, a start search bar on the desktop itself, and if the apps bar showed all apps, not just metro apps, it would at least be functional. Also the hot spot stuff should probably only be triggered for metro apps.

Windows 8 is a tablet OS. That's the reality.
For desktop users, even with all the improvements, the effective user experience is a step backwards. I don't see why desktop users have to suffer because the iPad is doing so well.

This is a fail on Microsoft's part. Win8 will probably earn a reputation worse than Vista.


By acturbo on 1/13/2013 1:45:01 PM , Rating: 2
imo, MS should have just upgraded the icons of the old destkop to be Tiles. That's it. Not complicated. This would eliminated the dual Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde schizophrenic dual desktop (new Live Tiles vs old Desktop Icons) and it would have given Windows an interesting fresh interface for users and developers alike. Instead, they released 2 desktops, that offer 2 drastically different experiences, not to mention 2 programming APIs (Win32/64 vs WinRT). It's a mess at all levels. And unlike how Win7 fixed Vista, I don't see how Win9 will be able to fix Win8's blunders.


By Donkey2008 on 1/6/2013 10:24:39 PM , Rating: 3
Strange. I used Win8 all through the Beta and then the retail for a few months. I hated every minute of it. Going back to Windows 7 was the best thing I have ever done.

Feel free to categorize me under "Used it extensively, yet still do not like it" people.


By acturbo on 1/13/2013 1:51:46 PM , Rating: 2
I did the same thing, except i skipped all previews and used the shipping version of Win8 intensely for 3 weeks (i was very excited about the new Live Tiles, and still am). But since all my Windows apps are obviously Win32, i kept having to use my old desktop to run them. This makes no sense why MS created this dual desktop mess. Then, i reluctantly had to reformat my drive and put Win7 back on. And, yes spent the mandatory 2 days re-installing every app (VS 2005 to VS 2012, Adobe CS6, etc. etc. 50+ apps). I've been a MS techie for 20 years ... i even worked at MS as a sr. product manager .... but i'm at a loss for words what MS did here.


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