Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has announced that four million Windows 8 upgrades have been sold to consumers in the first three days of availability. This is a better sales performance than Windows 7 at the same stage, three years previously, he claimed. Mr Ballmer said that additionally “tens of millions” of copies of Windows 8 have been sold to corporate customers.
The Microsoft CEO was speaking at an event in Seattle, Washington; the Build 2012 event aimed at Windows developers. Mr Ballmer wants as many developers as possible working on new software for Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8. He called Windows 8 “the single largest opportunity for software developers today.” The opportunity is big because Microsoft forecasts are big; an estimated 400 million new devices running the new OS will be in user’s hands a year from now according to Mr Ballmer. He was also very enthusiastic about new Windows 8 hardware saying “With Windows 8, we absolutely have in our hands the best PCs - hardware and software - ever made. The best laptops, desktops, the new tablet meets PC form factor.”
Looking at these big number claims, Julie Bort, writing for Business Insider, thinks that the 400 million estimate comes from a recent IDC prediction that 391 million PCs will be shipped in 2013. It must be pointed out that IDC’s figures for PCs will include Macs and Windows 7 PCs. However Windows 7 sold 175 million copies in its first year and if only half of next year’s 391 million PC sales are sporting Windows 8 then that’s a significant bit of leapfrogging, making 195 million sales for Windows 8 in its first year.
Incidentally every paying Build 2012 attendee went home with a 32GB Microsoft Surface tablet with touch cover and a Nokia Lumia 920 smartphone.
Thanks to AllThingsD for the photos.