Windows 8 Already Beating Windows Vista
November 27, 2012

Data Shows That Windows 8 Usage Is Already Outperforming Windows Vista

Michael Harper for — Your Universe Online

It´s been one month since Microsoft released Windows 8, their latest duopoly of an operating system complete with Live Tiles and a tighter integration between other Microsoft offerings. The new update has been seen as a bold move and even a gamble by some, and making matters a little more murky, Microsoft has only once mentioned sales figures of the new OS.

Yesterday, Computerworld released a report which finds Windows 8 is already outperforming 2007´s troubled Vista release.

Despite handily beating Vista, Windows 8 still lags far behind 2009´s Windows 7 release.

Using data from web metrics firm Net Applications, Computerworld found that 0.45% of all windows computers were running Windows 8 during the month of October. During the same time 3 years ago, 2.33% of all Windows machines were running Windows 7.

Both Windows 7 and 8 were released in the latter days of October, 2009 and 2012, respectively. Vista was released in late January 2007, and up until recently, Computerworld was not able to compare the first month numbers of Windows 8 and Vista, as Net Applications did not begin collecting information until one month after the Vista launch. Making matters more difficult, the Vista launch wasn´t Microsoft´s finest hour. Many became worried about the compatibility of their old software, which slowed adoption rates.

Computerworld recently found some data on the Net Applications Web site, however, which allowed them to compare the early adoption rates of both Windows 8 and Vista.

According to the Net Applications data, 0.19% of all Windows computers were running Vista at the end of January 2007.

This number is less than half of those computers running Windows 8 at the end of the month of its launch.

Microsoft´s newest operating systems are typically available in beta for many months before an official release. As such, it´s not uncommon for a small portion of computers to be running this unreleased software.

In the months leading up to the Windows Vista launch, only .12% and .17% of all Windows PCs were running the newest OS.

This number is less than half of the computers running early versions of Windows 8 in August and September.

Computerworld does mention that Windows 8 may have had a slight 4-day advantage over Vista. Since Windows 8 launched a few days before the end of the month, more users could have upgraded in those first few days. Secondly, Microsoft´s $40 upgrade could have brought in many more users who didn´t want to pay full price for the new OS. Windows 7 and 8 were also made available just before the holiday shopping season, a timeframe Windows Vista could not meet.

Windows 8 may be beating Vista in terms of early adoption, but that may not have been a difficult feat. Windows 7 remains the strong leader of these three OSes, capturing 10% of all Windows machines in 5 months after its release. It took Windows Vista a year to get these same numbers.

Still in the early days, it´s unclear if Windows 8 will follow in Windows 7´s footprints or Vista´s. Reviews for the newest Windows have been largely mixed. The new OS is likely to find praise in the security circles as a more secure and stable platform, while UI experts and corporations have pointed out the steep learning curves involved in teaching this new software to users who have become so accustomed to the “old” Windows.

For their part, Microsoft has only officially mentioned selling 4 million “Windows 8 upgrades.”

What´s more, one analyst, David Johnson of Forrester, has recently pointed out that Enterprise adoption seems slow, with only 4% of the companies he interviewed saying they planned to switch to Windows 8, and 10% saying they´ll give it a complete miss.