Windows 10 has overtaken Windows 7 in usage share. The milestone was reached some 29 months after the latest and greatest operating system from Microsoft first debuted, according to StatCounter.
Specifically, Windows 10 started the year with 42.78 percent usage share (up 1.09 points from 41.69 percent), while Windows 7 fell to 41.86 percent (down 0.03 points from 41.89 percent). Windows 8.1 followed with 8.72 percent (down 0.34 points from 9.16 percent), Windows XP had 3.36 percent (down 0.24 points from 3.60 percent), Windows 8 had 2.44 percent (down 0.42 points from 2.86 percent), and Windows Vista brought up the rear with 0.74 percent (up 0.04 points from 0.70 percent).
Windows 10 adoption started out very strong, but it naturally slowed down as the months progressed. The operating system was installed on over 75 million PCs in its first four weeks, passed 110 million devices after 10 weeks, 200 million in under six months, 270 million after eight months, 300 million after nine months, 350 million after 11 months, 400 million after 14 months, 500 million after 21 months, and 600 million after 27 months.
Windows 10 is a service, meaning it was built in a very different way from its predecessors so it can be regularly updated with not just fixes, but new features, too. Microsoft has released four major updates so far: November Update, Anniversary Update, Creators Update, and Fall Creators Update. Because these updates are free and include new functionality, Windows 10 is more attractive than its predecessors, further helping its adoption.
StatCounter measures usage market share by examining aggregate data of about 10 billion pageviews per month across its network of over 2 million websites. The results thus show which platforms are used the most, as opposed to which ones have the most users (for user market share, you’ll want to look at data from Net Applications). Put another way, StatCounter is saying Windows 10 is used more than Windows 7, when looking at total pages visited, but it may or may not have more users — one person naturally visits more than one page.
Net Applications places Windows 10 and Windows 7 at 28.19 percent and 44.81 percent market share, respectively. Given it passed 25 percent mark almost a year ago, Windows 10 is unlikely to take the market share crown this year.