It’s only one month ago that Microsoft launched its controversial new operating system, Windows 8. Sales figures for the new OS were revealed by Tami Reller yesterday at the Credit Suisse 2012 Annual Technology Conference in Arizona, where she announced “The journey is just beginning, but I am pleased to announce today that we have sold 40 million Windows 8 licenses so far.”
Outpacing Windows 7
The 40 million sold figure means that “Windows 8 is outpacing Windows 7 in terms of upgrades” explains the official Windows blog. Reuters notes that Reller didn’t give an exact comparison using the initial month sales figures for Windows 7 but we do know that Windows 7 “sold just over 60 million units in the first 10 weeks on sale at the end of 2009.”
Microsoft has made it easier and cheaper to upgrade to the newest version of its Windows OS. Also once upgraded you may feel Windows 8 performs even better than your old OS on the same hardware. “We built Windows 8 to work great on existing Windows 7 PCs. And we also set out to make upgrading from Windows 7 to Windows 8 super easy,” said Reller.
Customers “get the product”
There has been a lot of criticism of the new interface with which Windows 8 users are presented. With this in mind Reller talked not just about the numbers but about other research into customer’s Windows 8 use. “When people experience Windows 8, they do find it is easy to get started and fun to learn. We know from the data we're getting in that customers do indeed get the product,” she said. Use of and personalisation of the Start Screen was noted and Reller added that the average user added 19 new tiles to the start screen interface in their first three weeks of Windows 8 usage.
Other interesting figures forthcoming from Microsoft’s research are that, on their first use of Windows 8, 85 per cent of users use the desktop and about half of them visit the new Windows Store to look through and download apps.
Tami Reller has only recently taken over control of the Windows Division from the departed Steven Sinofsky. During a Q&A at the conference she was asked how the Sinofsky departure has affected Windows development. Ms Reller responded that the Windows team and the product are in “great shape”.
Surface and Xbox 360
We would have liked to hear some Microsoft Surface sales figures but none were forthcoming. However earlier in the conference Microsoft said it had sold 750,000 Xbox 360 consoles during black Friday week in the US, a great figure but down from last year’s even more impressive 960,000 sales total for the same week.