Independent web analytics company StatCounter reports that Windows 8 has a huge battle ahead on a global scale, and it's not just with Google's mobile OS, Android. Windows XP, which launched over 10 years ago in October 2001, will be one of its biggest contenders, as the popular OS still controls a nearly 30-percent usage share worldwide.
According to the report, Windows 7 held a worldwide 52.2-percent usage share in September whereas Windows XP controlled 27.64-percent. Here in the States, Windows 7 had a usage share of 49.36-percent compared to 16.42-percent for Windows XP.
What's more, Windows Vista is newer than XP, but its share usage was even lower with 7.58-percent of the global market and 11.67-percent in the United States. Over in the UK, Windows 7 had a 51.75-percent share while Windows XP fell in second with a 15.57-percent share. Windows Vista trailed in third place with a 12.95-percent share.
On Thursday Aodhan Cullen from the firm's research arm, StatCounter Global Stats, said that based on daily OS data alone, business users in particular are still reluctant to move from Windows XP despite Microsoft's urge to upgrade. Usage of Windows XP significantly peaks during the working week (Monday through Friday) while usage of Windows 7 dips in the same timeframe.
Now, enter Windows 8 with an entirely new interface. Switching between Windows XP and Windows 7 is one thing, but businesses may be reluctant to spend time and money re-training employees on how to use the new Windows platform. A survey conducted by Forrester Research earlier this month revealed that only 33-percent plan to upgrade while 40-percent haven't even considered the new OS. Ten percent plan to skip Windows 8 entirely.
"The new Windows 8 interface represents a radical overhaul for Microsoft, allowing it to enter the tablet market with the new Surface. The scale of change of the desktop experience, however, may heighten the initial reluctance of traditional business users to upgrade to this new OS," Cullen added.
Windows 8 is officially making its debut today followed by a full retail launch tomorrow, October 26.