Report: Windows 10 Takes Over Windows 7

Posted on January 1, 2019 by Mehedi Hassan in Windows, Windows 10 with 43 Comments

Windows 10 has finally taken over Windows 7 in terms of usage. The OS, first released back in 2015, now has more users than Windows 7, according to Net Market Share’s latest report.

Windows 10 was lagging behind Windows 7, arguably one of the most popular versions of Windows to date. According to Net Market Share, however, Windows 10 now has a usage share of 39.22%, beating Windows 7’s 36.90% usage share. That’s as of December 2018.

The achievement is a big one for Redmond. Still, the software giant has a huge year ahead for itself, and that 36.90% usage share of Windows 7 is a major portion of the entire Windows userbase. Majority of Window 7 users continue to be enterprise customers, and Microsoft will have to continue pushing these businesses to slowly make the shift to Windows 10. That’s not an easy job, for sure, but considering Windows 10 is now the most popular version of Windows, the complete shift will happen eventually.

Microsoft originally hoped for Windows 10 to get a billion active devices within the first two/three years of release, and that, of course, didn’t end up happening. Although Windows 10’s usage rocketed up when the OS first launched, it’s no secret the growth has slowed down ever since the end of the free upgrade offer for older versions of Windows. We still can’t overlook the fact that Microsoft’s Windows 10 has been growingly steadily over the years, and the company’s Windows as a Service plan has worked out pretty well.

But now that Windows 10 is practically the most popular OS in the world, with macOS (as a whole) being used by 9.61% of users and Linux claiming 2.09%, Microsoft’s dominance in the desktop world will continue to make the company relevant in the consumer world.

The company has a huge year ahead of itself — with one big Windows 10 update expected in the first half of the year, and another in the second. Microsoft has focused on creativity and productivity in Windows 10 for the past feature updates, and the company’s focus will likely continue to be on productivity this year. Happy new year!

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Comments (43)

43 responses to “Report: Windows 10 Takes Over Windows 7”

  1. CaedenV

    It would be a lot easier if the 'Pro' version was a bit less consumer focused and didnt come packaged with a bunch of silly games. I know they can be removed, you all know they can be removed, but my bosses are convinced that they are part of the OS and that it is not fit for a work environment... Even though I have snuck in 2 NUCs with win10 on them and the employees who use it have nothing but praise about them and keep asking when they can get those for the main cube workstations.

  2. MikeGalos

    As an FYI: "But now that Windows 10 is practically the most popular OS in the world, with macOS (as a whole) being used by 9.61% of users and Linux claiming 2.09%" is referring only to desktop/laptop operating systems. By factoring in that the same NetMarketShare December report says that desktop/laptop operating systems are 43% of the total OS market we get the following for the whole OS market:

    Android: 38.9%

    Windows: 37.9%

    iOS: 17.1%

    macOS: 4.2%

    Linux 0.9%

    Other 1.1%

    • sevenacids

      In reply to MikeGalos:

      Now since Android is basically Linux under the hood, you can say that Linux has "taken over the world" with 39,8%. What I mean is: It all depends on your perspective, and definition what an OS is, and what hardware you take into consideration. Just turn some knobs, and you'll get the numbers you like. There is no definite answer.

      • MikeGalos

        In reply to sevenacids:

        Or you could say that, as the article did, that only Desktop/Laptop OS are actual operating systems and that Linux is at 2% after declaring "the year of the Linux Desktop" every year since the mid 1990s.

        Or you could argue that iOS and macOS and Android and Linux are all architecturally versions of Unix and thus there are only two commercial operating systems.

        In reality, though, while Android is Linux based, it's not really compatible with uncustomized Linux distributions nor do the application interfaces really match. That's kind of the problem. The real thing to measure is application development compatibility and that's more complex than any one number.

      • FalseAgent

        In reply to sevenacids:

        Android uses Linux basically just as a HAL.

  3. Winner

    Such a compelling product. They offered a free upgrade to Win 10. After 3.5 years of attrition they only match the Windows 7 market share.

  4. MikeGalos

    Based on those same numbers, the computing devices in the world are:

    37.9% Windows computers

    36.3% Android phones

    14.8% iPhones

    4.2% Macintoshes

    2.6% Android tablets

    2.3% iPads

    0.9% Linux computers

  5. todayswindow

    It's like this yes your computer may be able to handle Windows 10 but for it to be fast it all depends on what is running your system in the first place if you got a computer with 2 cores it's not going to be as fast as a computer with 4 ,6 or 8 core computer remember your computer is as fast as it can be with the stuff that's in it so it will be slower then what you had originally on your PC your computer was designed to run a certain windows not for an upgrade it ran your windows 7 like a race driver runs a race car smooth but when you get an upgrade that is totally different then what it was disigned for it's going to have problems you want a fast windows 10 your best bet is to buy a Windows 10 computer that is made for windows 10

  6. brettscoast

    Good post this really does show what a roaring success Windows 7 was after the disastrous Windows Vista release. It's taken Windows 10 a while I sincerely hope that Microsoft keeps the crapware/ads off Windows 10 with this year's updates.

  7. jmwoods301

    That was for the month of December, when holiday sales of new PC's likely spiked Windows 10 numbers.

    If you run the search from January 2018 to December 2018, Windows 7 leads Windows 10.

    One month is not exactly a trend.

  8. chiwax

    Two to three billion? They never said that! Ask Paul, ask Brad, ask Mary Jo, ask Rich Woods.....your entire gang of "thuds" can tell you that you aren't reporting correct information. Hilarious.

  9. irfaanwahid

    Mehedi, Microsoft had said 1 billion in 3 years not 2-3 billion.

  10. madthinus

    The news is strange enough as it is, no need to make up news: "Microsoft originally hoped for Windows 10 to get 2-3 billion users within the first two/three years of release, ..."

    • Mehedi Hassan

      In reply to madthinus:

      Sorry, it's fixed now. Was a typo.

      • madthinus

        In reply to Mehedi:

        It is hard to accept that. You linked to a story proclaiming a fact and then three words later you exaggerated it by claiming a number 2 to 3 times greater. That one billion device story was such a big story that it is ingrained almost in everyone that covers Microsoft. It is also not the first time you have taken liberty with some facts in your reporting. As someone that values the quality of the posts on this site compared to the drivel you can read about Microsoft on sites like Forbes, this is not acceptable nor is your excuse.

  11. donaselfies

    > Microsoft’s dominance in the desktop world will continue to make the company relevant in the consumer world.

    Hahahahaha. Good one.

  12. Tony Barrett

    If Windows 10 was actually more about what corporates wanted and not what Microsoft wanted, I think many more would have made the move. In reality, Windows 10 scares many IT departments - it changes too often, patching it is a nightmare and the stability is noticeably worse than Windows 7. Imagine supporting Win10 in the enterprise for a few years, and how many completely different build versions you could end up with having to support and patch. Crazy.

    • longhorn

      In reply to ghostrider:

      Windows 10 LTSC is the spiritual successor to Windows 7 Professional/Enterprise and it's pretty good. Forget the WaaS nonsense. It doesn't make sense for business, actually it's a threat to business, because of the added downtime.

      Having used Windows 10 LTSC for some time I almost feel like I should thank MS. I thought all hope was lost for Windows, but it's not as long as LTSC is around. Unfortunately MS hates this version with a passion. With sysadmin control over Windows updates and software installs/updates (either in a "Enterprise" setting or as an individual with the help of "tools") - there isn't a better version of Windows for productivity. It makes Windows 7 feel old. Good job, MS. You surprised me. This is real Windows - something to be proud of.

      • Tony Barrett

        In reply to longhorn:

        Agreed. LTSC (or LTSB as it is now) is an obvious choice, as it's built around a more manageable 2-3 year update cycle, and strips out a lot of the rubbish. But, MS make it very clear they don't want enterprises running it as a desktop OS, and unless you have SA, you can't get it anyway. IT shops who roll out Win10 Pro, or even Win10 Enterprise on the semi-annual channel are just asking for trouble.

      • hrlngrv

        In reply to longhorn:

        LTSC changes more often than older Windows versions used to. Especially when considering that MSFT used to come out with the final Service Pack 3-4 years after original release and no further feature changes during extended support from 5 years after release. That gave enterprises 6-7 years to use the same Windows version.

        FWLIW, I used NT4 until 2005, then XP until 2013, and am still using Windows 7, though that should change by late summer.

        I figure most enterprises definitely prefer at least 5 years with the same version between upgrades. Since they're paying MSFT annually anyway for Software Assurance and volume licensing, you'd think MSFT would be more willing to comply.

        • MikeGalos

          In reply to hrlngrv:

          I figure most enterprises definitely prefer using the same hardware and software for as many years as they can and would be running on IBM PC-XTs with MS-DOS 2.0 given only support cost considerations.

          On the other hand they'd expect that any new applications software they wanted would magically work on that nearly 40 year old hardware and system software and be speedy on it and support any communications protocols they needed to use for interaction and have the latest improvements and features with no changes in the UI or need for any training of the users.

          Most enterprises want lots of things that don't actually make sense. The better ones keep up with change. The others spend time complaining while they lose their ability to compete in a changing world.

          • skane2600

            In reply to MikeGalos:

            That's over-the-top exaggeration. Most IT folks weren't even alive when MS-DOS 2.0 was in common use. It's true that reasonable backward compatibility is more important to Enterprises than the minimal feature improvements Microsoft has made to Windows since Windows 7.

            Had MS focused on the needs of their core Windows customers rather than emphasizing mobile, perhaps Windows 8-10 might have been adopted much faster.

  13. dontbe evil

    but but nobody want windows 10 /s