The much-anticipated release of Windows 8, which was released on 26 October of this year, hasn’t been as explosive in terms of customers’ response as its predecessor Windows 7. According to StatCounter, a Web tracker and counter analysis tool, Internet traffic shows that Windows 8 is still not that popular for users.
Compared to Windows 7, the rollout of Microsoft’s latest Windows OS has yet to succeed the older version in sales. In fact, in the first month from its release in October 2009, Windows 7 was able to drive 4.93 percent Internet usage, whereas Windows 8 has stopped at 1.31 percent – this is a substantial difference.
It’s also necessary to say that StatCounter is unable to record actual sales numbers for the two operating systems. However, the global stats produced by StatCounter are based on monitoring more than 3 million websites that monitor the operating system a particular device is using when connecting to the site(s).
The comparison between the early performances of the two operating systems is striking because, in reality, their debut was similar: Both OSs were launched in October and both were preceded by an intense period of beta testing.
Numbers, however, can also give a different picture.
According to StatCounter, in fact, if it’s true that Windows 7 performed better in the first month after its debut in terms of Internet usage, Windows 8 is ahead if looking at how much the usage grew after the beta testing period: Windows 7 doubled its numbers while Windows 8 has tripled them.
Definitely the achievements of Windows 7 were helped by the dissatisfaction of many customers with Windows Vista. Windows 8 is also entering a very different market compared to three years ago where it has a fast-growing market for iOS and Android smartphones and tablets.
Hurricane Sandy might have also played a part in the lack of sales as many potential users were without electricity for Internet access and a means of transportation (due to the flood damage on many roads) for an extensive period of time, thus preventing people from heading to the nearest retail store or online to buy Windows 8. Despite this, the real test will be during the Holidays when consumers will really be able to send a clear message to Microsoft if Windows 8 is on their wish list or not.
Microsoft knows the importance of conquering its customers – therefore, you can expect the December holiday buying season to have a turnaround in sales for Windows 8 as it is probable the company will be offering special prices on downloads on its official sites.
It’s still early to say if Windows 8 will be a hit or a semi-flop – all that has been reported by sources is that Microsoft’s latest OS sales were well below projections.
Microsoft has yet to officially release total sale numbers for Windows 8 and that’s probably why the usage numbers haven’t been that great. However, the company did report the number of licenses sold was around 40 million, which includes sales to manufacturers.
Windows 8 is likely to see more sales in the near future as it should be appealing to consumers, especially the younger community, with its modern smartphone-like Start screen, its apps and social media support. Nevertheless, Windows 8 also promises to cater to working users with its performance, multitasking capabilities and battery, which is said to offer efficiency and power management. These are the features that Microsoft hopes will attract customers to have them upgrade from Windows 7 to version 8 real soon.