StatCounter’s Global Stats for Operating Systems installed worldwide show Microsoft Windows 10 climbing from less than one third of one percent market share in July 2015 to almost 11 percent market share at the end of December 2015. In comparison, Windows 8.1 started with less than one third of one percent market share at launch in October 2013 and reached almost 11 percent in November 2014. In other words, it has taken Windows 10 just five months to do what Windows 8.1 did in thirteen.
By another metric, GoSquared shows internet traffic statistics for Windows 10 devices climbing at 25 percent of all traffic, Windows 8 at 21 percent of all traffic, and Windows 7 at 48 percent of all traffic.
Image credit: Neowin.net
The reality of Microsoft’s success with the new OS doesn’t come off to some as a story filled with flowers and roses, however. The company has been criticized for changing the “Upgrade to Windows 10” notification prompt on their screens by removing the option to opt-out of the upgrade. During the Build 2015 conference, the Windows team announced that their internal goal is to have Windows 10 on over 1 billion devices within two to three years after launch (July 2015).
Microsoft Marketing Chief Chris Capossela has argued that the company is trying to reduce OS fragmentation in the install base by getting as many users as possible to upgrade to the new operating system. He claims Windows 10 is “free for anybody who has a Windows 7 or 8 machine. You can call that freemium if you want, but that was a decision, [and] we did not take that decision lightly.”
Regardless of Microsoft’s ambitious Windows install base strategy, it seems that the majority of users are taking the bait and either upgrading from Windows 7, 8 and 8.1 via the free upgrade path or simply doing a Clean Installation on both BIOS and UEFI systems of all types.