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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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By perspicacity on 1/9/2013 9:07:03 AM , Rating: 2
I hated Windows 8 more before I installed it on my laptop and actually used it. But my laptop is not my full-time computer so... I'm not locked into it.

In many ways it is quicker... I like that... and I understand the metro-screen push for the touch experience. But it feels unfinished.

The left lower corner right click menu provides convenient access to everything important... but was it really necessary to take away the excellent Windows 7 start menu?


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