The latest operating system market share numbers from Net Applications reveal that Windows 8.x is still struggling to match the pace set by its predecessor, Windows 7. For the month of September, Windows 8’s global market share stood at 5.59 percent while Windows 8.1 had a slightly larger share at 6.67 percent.
The combined 12.26 percent share for Windows 8.x is actually lower than the tally for last month, when Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 together accounted for 13.37 percent of the overall operating system market.
Interestingly enough, Windows XP is still making a lasting impression on the market with a 23.87 percent share during the month of September. But the overwhelming favorite is still Windows 7, which commands 52 percent of the operating system market.
General availability for Windows 7 began on October 22, 2009. Two years later during the month of October 2011, the operating system had 28.83 percent of the market according to Net Applications. General availability for Windows 8 came on October 26, 2012, so two years later we’re looking at sales performance that is lagging well behind its predecessor.
Microsoft has acknowledged that it made mistakes with Windows 8.x, specifically with regards to the touch interface. Microsoft’s Joe Belfiore admitted, “The large Start screen, the notion of apps running full [screen] as they do on tablet devices - was trying to salute the idea that people would be productive on these touch devices, but we didn't quite get it right."
But the company hopes to win consumers back with Windows 10. The operating system will combine some of the proven functionality from Windows 7 with the good parts from Windows 8.x. Windows 10 will also offer increased functionality in the form of multiple desktops, Cortana integration, and distinct UI operating modes for touch screen devices and computers that features a keyboard/mouse.
Windows 10 is expected to launch in late 2015.