[LINK] Windows

stephen at melbpc.org.au stephen at melbpc.org.au
Tue Jul 10 15:21:53 AEST 2012

Windows 7 to pass XP in usage share this month .. and, could remain 
Microsoft's most popular operating system for years if Win 8 falls flat

ge_share_this_month?source=toc  By Gregg Keizer. July 2, 2012  (snip)

According to Net Applications, three-year-old Windows 7 powered 41.6% of 
the computers that were online during June. 

The 11-year-old Windows XP, meanwhile, accounted for 43.6% of all systems.

"Based on trends, Windows 7 may surpass Windows XP in usage share in 
July," said Net Applications, a U.S. firm that tracks browser and 
operating system use by monitoring the number of unique users who visit 
the 40,000 websites of its customers.

Together, Windows XP and Windows 7 accounted for 92.4% of all Windows PCs 
that went online last month, said Net Applications. 

Windows Vista, the problematic upgrade Microsoft released in early 2007 --
 and which never mustered more than a 19% global usage share -- accounted 
for just 7.3% of all Windows machines in June.

Microsoft faces an uphill battle with the drastically-different Windows 
8, at least in the enterprise. The consensus is that most businesses will 
pass on Windows 8, in part because they haven't wrapped up migrations to 
Windows 7, but also because of the consumer focus of the new edition and 
its "jarring" mash up of two distinct user interfaces (UIs).

If Windows 8's update is similar to Windows 7 -- the new version will 
accumulate about 17% of the world's OS share in its first 12 months. Much 
of that increase would likely come from Windows XP, which is nearing its 
end of life.

Because XP is nearing retirement (Microsoft will stop serving XP security 
updates in April 2014), it's possible that its decline will remain at the 
current average. That means Windows 7 would remain flat, as XP is the 
sole victim of PC replacements running Windows 8.

Things could go even worse for Windows 8, of course: XP users abandoning 
the aged OS could keep choosing Windows 7 almost exclusively. That's what 
is happening in many corporations now, and if the experts are right, the 
trend will continue.

In that case, Windows 7's share could actually increase after Windows 8's 
launch later this year. 

Depending on the uptake of Windows 8, it's possible that Windows 7 could 
continue to gain share, perhaps to the tune it has over the last 12 
months. That would put Windows 7's share at 57.7% by the fall of 2013.

If that happens, it would be a first: Typically, a new edition of Windows 
steals at least some share from its immediate predecessor. Even Vista, as 
poorly received as it was, pulled users from XP.

This worse-case scenario for Windows 8 would confirm what some have 
wondered, whether Windows 7 is the next XP, an operating system destined 
to remain the bulwark of Microsoft's business for the foreseeable future.



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