Windows 8 Adoption Is Slow Going, Windows Phone Cracks 1 Percent

    January 29, 2013
    Zach Walton
    Comments are off for this post.

According to Microsoft, the company has officially sold 60 million Windows 8 licenses. The number accounts for upgrades, individual purchase and the bulk purchases made by OEMs. It seems many of the latter licenses haven’t been put in use yet as Windows 8 has yet to hit a growth explosion.

Net Applications recently updated its desktop OS market share numbers for December 2012, and Windows 8 is still having a rough time of it. At the end of December, Windows 8 only made up 1.72 percent of the entire desktop OS market. That’s only a .63 percent jump from November’s numbers. We can give Windows 8 some slack because it’s still relatively new, but it’s still looking a little sluggish.

As for Windows in general, Windows 7 is obviously still on top after it finally dethroned Windows XP in September of last year. Since then, you can see that Windows 7 has been growing at almost the exact same rate at which Windows XP is declining. That means Windows XP users are upgrading to Windows 7 instead of 8. Not exactly the best news for Microsoft, but it shows that people may finally be wising up to the security risks the outdated Windows XP poses. It could also just mean that PC gamers are finally starting to realize that they need Windows 7 if they want to take advantage of DirectX 11.

Just like with mobile browsers, Apple still rules the mobile OS scene. iOS has a majority of the market with 60.13 percent. Android is lagging far behind with only 24.6 percent. Samsung may finally be beating Apple in handset sales, but the numbers also account for tablets. Apple’s iPad is unmatched in sales so it makes sense for iOS to have such a large presence here.

Of particular interest, however, is the growth of Windows Phone. Microsoft launched Windows Phone 8 in November with the hopes of finally becoming a major player in the smartphone market. The release seems to have spurred growth somewhat as Windows Phone now has 1 percent of the market.

It will be interesting to see how Windows 8 and Windows Phone both grow in the coming year. There’s talk of a “relaunch” for Windows 8 happening in February that would help Microsoft refocus its efforts on getting the OS into the hand of more consumers. If successful, we could see a marked jump in market share over the course of the year.

  • https://twitter.com/Zarniw0Op Zarniw0Op

    ROFL I don’t know where you get your figures from but they are highly “dubious”. I can only assume that you are a paid blogger for cough cough you know who. Try correcting your article and resubmitting.

    • http://www.webpronews.com/author/zach-walton Zach Walton

      From your Twitter account, it seems that you really like Windows Phone. That’s great! I think Windows Phone is pretty fantastic as well, but it doesn’t change the fact that it’s going to have a rough time of it before it finally finds an audience. Cracking 1 percent is pretty huge for it since it shows that WIndows Phone 8 is helping the brand grow.

      As for the source of the numbers, I point out that they come from Net Applications – a respected firm that tracks these statistics monthly. There’s nothing “dubious” about them, I can assure you that.

    • Bob

      Be careful with interpreting these results. If you go to the “OS System versions,” iPads are 2x the market share of iPhones. Actual sales are the other way around.

      And WinPho doesn’t compete in the tablet space; take away the tablet system versions, and you get 3.2% market share for WinPho. Most important is that it’s growing, which will get dev attention and examples in public for word of mouth advertising.

      • http://rghnews.wordpress.com/ Russell G Hall

        I write a blog on this same topic, if you are interested in seeing some other opinions.

        Bob’s point is exactly correct that it is difficult to evaluate the numbers when you lump phones and tablets. The truth is tablets are really lower priced PC’s, not phones. When you lump tablets in with the PC market, instead of the phone market, you would see drastically different market dynamics.

        To pretend that tablets are “the thing” when tablets are getting outsold 3:1 seems like a questionable analysis. No doubt the trend for tablet sales is accelerating, but in 3 months, when every PC is touchscreen, how do you distinguish between touchscreen devices? Based on size? Based on processor type? As an example, in the numbers above, where are devises like the Lenovo Yoga counted? What about the Microsoft Surface?

  • Paul

    Windows Phone 8 is a solid platform and is growing rapidly there are close to 200,000 apps already including the top 46 of the top 50 apps, the Windows Phone i have (Nokia Lumia 820) is very well built is very easy to use very fast very secure for work purposes has microsoft office built in for free, it has exchange integration, secure boot etc, i have my email delivered from yahoo and hotmail straight to my main screen, i also use xbox live games on my windows phone 8 too…great feature and you can use it as a remote control for your xbox….i would suggest that people should visit a phone shop and try a windows phone 8 phone before writing it off…i am very pleased with my purchase…..the built in Nokia Drive sat nav app is as good as buying a seperate sat nav..it has turn by turn voice navigation too….Plus the marketshare figures are way higher than your source suggests..

  • Dan Hugos

    There is quite a bit of conflicting interpretation out there as to what the numbers mean, which is certainly normal. Personally, I think there is some sort of shared sense that MS expected things to happen overnight, which I very much doubt. Perhaps the stock market expected it, because they live in this world of instant results, but I don’t see any technology company looking at it that way. It takes time for new approaches to be adopted, which is what W8 clearly represents.

    I think the main thing is that there haven’t been wild reports of major software blunders in W8, the likes of which totally devalue the brand in the mind of the consumer, such as Apple did so carelessly with their recent release of Maps. Therefore, there have been realistic revenue gains across all product lines.

    So as people eventually consider new phones after wringing out all they could from whatever their current brands, WP8 appears to be a solid player. I think people generally agree that the WP8 is a nice phone, and quite different from the rest of the field.

    Similarly, when the world is ready to take on W8, it will be even more stable than it appears to be now, because it will have been available for a good while, and users will be that much more ready to take on the change.

  • DJ McManus

    “Of particular interest, however, is the growth of Windows Phone. Microsoft launched Windows Phone 8 in November with the hopes of finally becoming a major player in the smartphone market. Did it work? Not really, but it was enough to finally push Windows Phone over 1 percent.” – Z. Walton

    “Not really?” Did you expect Windows Phone to capture 10% – 15% of the marketplace in just 2 1/2 months on the shoulders of WP8)? iPhone and Android have been out for years and Windows Phone 8 was just released! What a completely baseless and straight up foolish statement. Don’t you care about doing your job right? You are obviously an iPhone or Android sheep. Do you think iPhone just all of a sudden overtook RIM? Embarrassing. Apparently, the band-aid on my finger can write for WebProNews with the diligence and objectiveness that is put into writing this internet rag.

    • http://www.webpronews.com/author/zach-walton Zach Walton

      I can see your point. My statement made it seem like I was expecting Windows Phone 8 to elevate the platform to new heights when that wasn’t my intention whatsoever. I have changed it to better reflect the information. Thanks for the input.

      • Dan Hugos

        Hey, way to be an exceptionally good sport about a slightly over-emphatic response.

  • puppy

    remove the ipad tablet, its should not be part of your chart…… your report is wrong…… apple fanboy.

  • http://madhatter.ca Wayne Borean

    Numbers are always fun. The big problem is interpretation.

    Web browsing stats never match real world usage. They can’t. Too few websites report their stats. My site shows Windows market share at about 10%! That is the result of my stuff being more interesting to Mac and Linux users, so that’s who I draw.

    Then consider my wife’s Android phone. She never uses it to surf the net, she has an IPad and a laptop for that, and her eyesight isn’t what it used to be. I do use my iPhone to surf, but only when travelling. At home I use the iPad for surfing, and a laptop for writing.

    As to Windows 8 – the biggest problem blocking adaption is that tablets are Netbooks, devices that people buy heavily based on price. Windows 8 and Windows 8RT devices are too expensive to get much take up. The top end of the NetBook/Tablet market is owned by Apple, just like the top end of the PC market is owned by Apple.

    Bottom end Windows devices are often not as attractive as less expensive Android devices to the consumer, who is struggling financially.

    If Microsoft wants to increase sales, it’ll have to:

    1) get unemployment below 6%
    2) ensure the jobs pay decent wages

    Microsoft doesn’t have the power to do that.


  • ccneat

    a few comments…
    I was able to go to Net Applications and get the current numbers which shows that the latest version of Mac was eclipsed by Windows 8 last week. and appears to be growing 1/2 % a week I am not sure why the author was limited to data almost a month old. At the current rate Win 8 will have a larger share that all Non MS OSs combined ( including Mac, Android and iOS)

    I don’t know why your chart goes out to February when the public release was October. Does it bolster the case that Win 8 is off to a slow start? If so then what is comparison to other Consumer and Developer Preview periods for Windows.