Skip to main content

Windows 8 Usage Growing, But Still Behind Windows Vista

Net Applications has released its OS usage report for March, revealing that Windows 7 still dominates the world, commanding 44.73 percent of the operating system market, up from its 44.55 percent share in February. Usage of the platform has seemingly flatlined since 2Q12, owning 40.51 percent of the market in May 2012 and 45.11 percent in December 2012.

Unsurprisingly, Windows XP settles in at a close second, grabbing 38.73 percent of the market. However, unlike Windows 7, usage of the OS continues to steadily decline, dropping from its 38.99 percent share in February and 39.51 percent in January. Windows XP had a 44.85 percent market share in May 2012 and a 39.08 percent share in December 2012.

As for Windows 8, which was released last fall, the new OS continues to slowly gain ground. In January, the touchy platform had 2.26 percent of the OS market. That number jumped slightly in February with a 2.67 percent share and then 3.17 percent in March. Adoption reportedly isn't as quick as Microsoft would like, possibly due to a lack of affordable touch-based solutions and consumer reluctance to change.

On the Windows Vista front, usage of the third most popular OS on the planet continues to decline. In January, it had an OS market share of 5.24 percent, followed by 5.17 percent in February and 4.99 percent in March. Mac OS X 10.8, falling into fifth place behind Windows 8, had a market share of 2.65 percent in March, up from 2.61 percent in February and 2.44 percent in January.

Net Application's report also reveals that Windows RT commands a mere 0.02 percent of the OS market, falling behind Windows 2000 (0.05 percent), Windows NT (0.07 percent) and Linux (1.17 percent). Windows 8 Pro used on touch-based solutions had a better showing than its ARM-based RT cousin in March with a 0.12 percent share.

The good news here for Microsoft is that Windows 8 continues to grow and Vista continues to decline. At this rate, the revamped OS should surpass Vista and assume third place on the usage chart by the summer. Maybe we'll even see a significant increase once Windows 8.1 is released, and cheaper touch-based solutions arrive on the market.

The bad news is that Microsoft's ancient Windows XP platform still consumes 38.73 percent of the OS market, and support will officially be severed in a little more than a year from now. That means no more security updates no matter how much you plead to the Redmond company. It will definitely be interesting to see these statistics again in April 2014.

Contact Us for News Tips, Corrections and Feedback

  • edogawa
    Windows 8 isn't really an upgrade over 7, and with Metro, people do not want to change to that "confusing" GUI.

    I think the hate for Windows 8 is justified to a point, yes metro is terrible for the desktop PC, but the operating system itself is fantastic. I needed a new Windows license so I got Windows 8 when it released and the first thing I installed was Start8, it's like I never left Windows 7, and it's faster with some nice improvements without a single issue(for me at least).

    What really is shocking is that people still use Vista.
    Reply
  • hijaxhfx
    I don't mind the metro for the tablet but for my PC no way. Gonna stick with 7 long as i can.
    Reply
  • A Bad Day
    edogawaWhat really is shocking is that people still use Vista.
    Vista SP2 with the Platform Update isn't that bad, far better than the vanilla Vista.

    People seem to have forgotten vanilla Windows xp's compatibility horrors at launch, or the overall Windows Mistake Edition failboat.
    Reply
  • memadmax
    At this rate, it *may* overtake XP in a fifty years or so ^.^

    Suck it up MS, Win8 is failsauce, just dump it and get us Win9 already, or else fix it so we can get rid of metro if we want(built in, not some lame thirdparty program, the actual Start Bar)....
    Reply
  • A Bad Day
    EDIT: I'll be waiting until Windows Blue. I wonder how much will MS fix some of its UI flaws.
    Reply
  • CarolKarine
    windows 8 actually isn't that bad. I upgraded from windows 7 cause I got win 8 for 70 USD, thought why not? I can sell it for more than what I bought it for if it's bad.

    anyways, it boots 3 times faster, it's snappier, more secure, and the metro UI, while not intuitive at start, lets me move icons I don't want on my desktop to somewhere other than folders.
    Reply
  • dalethepcman
    I see Windows 8 really taking off once Leap motion\Kinect 2\Gesture devices are released and showcased. While touchscreens are all the fad for portable devices, the chocolate or pb&j smear on my screen is less than desirable. Smudges aside, when you have a stationary device would you prefer to walk up and touch it, or just wave your hand at it?

    They (microsoft) should have held back on Metro until it (and its ecosystem) were truly ready. In forcing people to use an immature Metro, it has left a bad taste in many of their mouths. If they had made this the default, but optional startup screen everyone would have been happy. Windows phone 8, windows 8, kinect 2 for pc, and xbox (720) should have all been released back to back to keep momentum and customer visibility. I think Microsoft missed a couple opportunities here.

    Sometimes to save your castle, you have to burn a few bridges. Microsoft has been unwilling to commit to this and is paying the price. As a tablet, the Nexus 7 / kindle fire / ipad mini are all at a price point that Microsoft and its hardware partners refuse to compete in. This imo has caused slow adoption for Windows 8 tablets. The original MSRP of $200 for windows RT tablets would have blown the market open for Microsoft. Again opportunity missed, but this one was more costly.

    The curtain is far from closed when it comes to Windows 8, but its certainly off to a less than stellar opening act.
    Reply
  • pyrotek85
    CarolKarinewindows 8 actually isn't that bad. I upgraded from windows 7 cause I got win 8 for 70 USD, thought why not? I can sell it for more than what I bought it for if it's bad.anyways, it boots 3 times faster, it's snappier, more secure, and the metro UI, while not intuitive at start, lets me move icons I don't want on my desktop to somewhere other than folders.
    Yeah I think it's great other than the UI, but Start8 fixes that. It feels like another incremental upgrade really.
    Reply
  • 8 is too much like the Vista release and too soon after 7. The UI is way too ugly and even though you can change 8 to be and look like 7 too many people already are past the point of liking 8 or getting it. Most will keep 7 as long as possible much like they did with XP. It just works.
    Reply
  • pyrotek85
    A Bad DayVista SP2 with the Platform Update isn't that bad, far better than the vanilla Vista.People seem to have forgotten vanilla Windows xp's compatibility horrors at launch, or the overall Windows Mistake Edition failboat.
    I personally never had Vista issues at all (no bad drivers to cause BSODs, had enough RAM), but it got a bad rep early on and it wouldn't let go.
    Reply