Windows 10 will go up against Windows 7, not Windows 8/8.1
Now that Microsoft has unveiled Windows 10 and is evenserving up a Technical Preview for curious folks to check out, Windows 8 is already feeling like old news. Some felt that way even before Microsoft’s announcement, which might explain why Windows 8 lost market share in the desktop OS market in the month of September. At this rate, it won’t be long before Windows 8’s share drops back into single digits.
According to Net Applications, Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 fell to a combined 12.26 percent of the desktop OS market by the end of September, down more than a percentage point from 13.37 percent at the end of August, which is the highest it’s ever been.
It will be interesting to see how things shake out from there. On one hand, it’s possible that Windows 8/8.1 peaked in August and will never see a higher share of the market now that Windows 10 is on the horizon. However, it’s also possible that Windows 8/8.1 will see a small surge as companies continue to migrate away from Windows XP, though the numbers don’t yet support that notion.
Since having support pulled back in April (except for firms who pay for extended support), Windows XP has dropped less than 3 percentage points, going from 26.29 percent at the end of April to 23.87 percent at the end of September, a decline of 2.42 percent. During that same time, Windows 8/8.1 has gone from 12.24 percent to 12.26 percent, or virtually nowhere.
Windows 7 is the one that’s benefiting from XP’s demise — it’s share of the market has gone from 49.27 percent at the end of April to 52.71 percent at the end of September, a bump of 3.44 percent. Barring an extreme turn of events, Windows 10 will find itself competing with Windows 7 instead of Windows 8/8.1.
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