Only 40 Percent of Windows Users Know Windows 11 Exists

Windows 11
(Image credit: Shuttterstock)

According to a recent report by, nearly 40% of Windows users are completely unaware of Windows 11 and its impending launch coming next week. For the users who do know about Windows 11, nearly half haven't decided if they will continue to use Windows 10 or install Windows 11. surveyed 1,042 adults living in the United States who run Windows as their primary operating system to see how many were aware of Microsoft's new OS. The participants were asked if they knew about Windows 11, if their computer was ready for Windows 11, and what their favorite features were about the OS.

Only 38% of participants said they were aware of a major change coming to the OS, with 45% of that group unaware of Windows 11's release in October. Plus, only a third of users knew if their system could meet Windows 11's system requirements.

When asked about favorite features, most were simply unsure of which feature they liked the most in Windows 11. But, out of the respondents who did have a favorite feature, they liked running Android apps the most. Microsoft's new UI came in second, and gaming-boosting capabilities (like direct storage) were third.

It remains to be seen whether the relatively low pre-launch buzz for Windows 11 will directly affect Microsoft in a negative way. Windows 11 hasn't been released just yet, so most users have no real reason to learn about the new operating system until they can get their hands on it.

That's not to mention that many Windows users have no control over the Windows 11 upgrade path. Moreover, Microsoft's higher system requirements will lock a large number of machines out from installing Windows 11 in the first place, giving users yet another reason to pay little attention to Windows 11 unless they need a new machine.

So it's very early to tell if low popularity will impact Windows 11 sales. If history is anything to go by, then Windows 11 will become the more popular and dominant OS regardless of mainstream popularity, largely because Microsoft will phase out Windows 10 eventually — we expect all future OEM systems to ship with Windows 11 out of the box once the OS is available. 

Aaron Klotz
Freelance News Writer

Aaron Klotz is a freelance writer for Tom’s Hardware US, covering news topics related to computer hardware such as CPUs, and graphics cards.

  • mitch074
    What does Windows 11 really bring to the table?
    Reduced hardware support (no CPU older than Core 8th gen or Zen+)
    no 32-bit version
    much larger storage and RAM requirement
    a slightly revamped interface that you could emulate with a plugin
    Direct Storage is actually ported back to Windows 10...As for Android apps compatibility, you could do it on Windows 10 too with a pluggable subsystem - I wonder how long it'll take for Oracle to attack Microsoft for again bundling a Java-compatible environment with Windows - last time they did that with WinXP, they got hit with a BAD lawuit by Sun Microsystem... that Microsoft lost.
  • MMorris666
    auto hdr
  • hotaru.hino
    Because not a lot of people care about technology enough to go "ooh, new OS."

    I'm pretty sure a majority of iDevice users don't even know iOS 15 is a thing yet.
  • Giroro
    Maybe they saw the Win11 interface and thought it was fake or a joke.

    Does somebody really need to sit down with Microsoft and explain to them the obvious practical reasoning behind putting the start button is in the corner?
    (You can get the mouse to the corner with one swipe of the mouse, from anywhere on the screen, without finding the cursor or even looking. When the start button is off center you have to find the cursor, swipe it down, find it again when it disappears off the bottom of the screen, then align it horizontally - or follow it with your eyes while moving it more slowly into the right place). It takes a 0.3 second action and makes it take 3-5x longer.

    Its just so much harder and slower to do not just that one very common action, but that awful "make it objectively worse for no real reason" design attitude has been applied to every part of the GUI. Less information. More clicks. Its the Windows 8 problem all over again. "If it ain't broke, change everything".

    The familiar efficient GUI was Microsoft's last competitive edge in an era of declining software support; All their biggest hardware partners are putting out machines with either terrible build quality, or horribly overpriced. So why would anybody stick with Microsoft over cheaper chromebooks or "it just works" Macs?
  • Jake Hall
    I have a feeling that 11 is gonna repeat WVista and W8 mistakes.
  • Eximo
    I don't think they could equal Windows 8 as a failure. Still one of my favorite videos where a guy sits his father down in front of it and he closes the start menu, he couldn't get back to it after many minutes of trying. At work I had to write a whole how to guide for testers (we ended up waiting for 8.1)

    Those odd choices are continuing today, but most people don't use the features they are changing. Not looking forward to a dumbed down system menu that actually seems less touch friendly then the old stuff. They are replacing a lot of icons with straight text links, no idea how they consider that better. (That might be the only thing Windows 11 has going for it, a more unified look in the menus)

    Think I am going to switch my HTPC to Linux, and put 11 on the gaming box. Basically just use it for games and the occasional use of Office 365 so shouldn't be too big a deal. I messed with Linux the other day for gaming, I could probably get used to it, but don't see the need.
  • DoctorPaul
    Admin said:
    Only 40% of Windows users know the existence of Windows 11, and even less know if they will upgrade to it.

    Only 40 Percent of Windows Users Know Windows 11 Exists : Read more
    Does software really exist? How much does it weigh? Does unreleased software exist, and if so, how would would we really know? Will Window 11 be an upgrade, or just an incremental version number? Is all software with a larger version number an upgrade?
  • logainofhades
    Because almost nobody really cares about their OS. All they care about is the system does what they want it to do.
  • DoctorPaul
    logainofhades said:
    Because almost nobody really cares about their OS. All they care about is the system does what they want it to do.

    And doesn’t do what they don’t want it to do. I remember when I couldn’t use Windows 3.1 more than a couple of hours before it crashed. Back then, real programmers used Unix, because Linux hadn’t been invented yet. Windows that is less vulnerable to malware would definitely be nice. Not really sure the TPM 2.0 bar is high enough, but it seems like a start. Windows 10 since v.2004 is now usable with WSL2 booting a Linux kernel side-by-side with the Windows kernel.
  • USAFRet
    logainofhades said:
    Because almost nobody really cares about their OS. All they care about is the system does what they want it to do.
    I've said exactly that, multiple times.