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41% of all Windows 8 licenses sold aren't being used


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Microsoft this week said that it had sold 100 million licenses of Windows 8 in the operating system's first six months. But how many copies are being used?

That's a question Patrick Moorhead, principal analyst with Moor Insights & Strategy, had at the top of his list after seeing Microsoft's milestone, which was revealed by Tami Reller, the CFO of the Windows division, in a Tuesday blog post and interviews with several media outlets.

"The challenge is figuring out what that actually means," said Moorhead of the 100-million mark. "It doesn't mean that there are that many devices out the door."

Microsoft counts a license as sold when it provides a customer an upgrade or one of its OEM partners a copy for a new PC, tablet or "convertible" device. The licenses to OEMS make up the bulk of that 100 million. According to Microsoft, the number it regularly cites for Windows 8 licenses sold—and before that, for Windows 7—exclude those sold to enterprises as part of their volume licensing agreements.

But because Microsoft considers a license sold—and accounts for it on the books that way—as soon as a Windows-powered device comes off the factory line, its "sold" label includes those PCs, tablets and 'tweeners that have been built but not yet purchased by a customer. OEM inventory, whatever is in retail or a warehouse, or for that matter, in transit from factory to destination, counts as sold Windows licenses.

Which was why Moorhead was suspicious of the 100-million figure as a valid indicator of how well Windows 8 has done. "How many Windows 8 PCs have sold and are being used?" asked Moorhead, arguing that that was a more accurate representation. "No specific news from Microsoft [on that] is bad news, because if it was good news, Microsoft would be shouting it at the top of their lungs. Instead, Microsoft is thinking they don't want to be persecuted over the number, so they're not saying anything."

Microsoft does have Moorhead's number—Windows 8 devices in users' hands—as Reller pointed out in an interview with the New York Times this week. Then, as she countered last month's reports from IDC and Gartner of steep declines in PC shipments during the first quarter, Reller said that Microsoft was seeing "consistent growth" in the number of PCs being activated as users turned on their purchases and connected to the Internet for the first time. Activations can be tallied by Microsoft because during the process, the device pings a company-owned server.

Coming up with a number in the face of Microsoft's refusal to divulge activation data risks wild inaccuracies. But without Microsoft's cooperation, that's all that's available, as research firms' varied estimates of such things as PC shipments attest.

Usage share metrics from California analytics company Net Applications can be combined with Microsoft's claim that 1.4 billion Windows PCs run Windows worldwide, a number reiterated Tuesday by Julie Larson-Green, who heads Windows development. Caveats apply: Net Applications' data is based on accessing the Internet, so it cannot account for hardware that doesn't go online, and the firm massages its raw data, weighting users by their country of origin, to come up with what it believes is a more accurate representation of operating system usage.

For April, Windows 8's average usage share was 4.2% of all Windows PCs, according to Net Applications' data. That number included what Net Applications labeled as "touch" for Windows 8 and Windows RT, those tablets and touch-enabled notebooks that browse the Web from the "Modern" user interface (UI) rather than the mouse-and-keyboard UI of the traditional desktop.

Four-point-two percent of 1.4 billion equals approximately 58.6 million, the number of devices using Windows 8 last month.

Those same calculations also illustrate the huge chore Microsoft and its customers—predominantly enterprises—have in ditching the 12-year-old Windows XP before April 2014's support retirement deadline. Using the same math, XP powers about 584.4 million machines, or well over half a billion PCs.

Windows 7? 682.2 million. Vista? 72.5 million, still more than Windows 8. What about Windows NT, the operating system first released in 1993, or two decades ago? 1.7 million PCs.

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  • Administrator

I feel the number might be even higher, considering that 58.6 million also includes pirates.

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I feel the number might be even higher, considering that 58.6 million also includes pirates.

.... True! full sharing. :pirate:

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calguyhunk

I think MS also follows Intel's tick-tock development cycle albeit unwittingly :tehe:

They introduce a whole new look and feel every second cycle - listen to public opinion - realize their mistakes - correct them - and release their fine tuned product as the new version! :lol:

Happened with Windows 'ME', when it changed over from Win 98. As terrible as it was, XP came out with the exact same look and feel (albeit with a different underlying architechture) and was a success 'cuz that's what ME/2000 should always have been ;) They whole cycle repeated itself with Vista and Win7 and now will prolly happen all over again with Win8 and 9 (?)! :think:

Think this BLUE service pack will help better digest Win8 for some (just like Vista service pack 1), but will not be the actual remedy till the next version comes out :think:

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MidnightDistortions

It will be interesting how they do future releases since not everyone is a fan of the new UI.

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41% of all Windows 8 licenses sold aren't being used

This may or may not be a fact - that's not possible to verify. However, I can prove the contrary . . . . . . . . . with solid facts.

I mean there are many licenses which are not being sold but still being used - check out the following links:-

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calguyhunk

I mean there are many licenses which are not being sold but still being used - check out the following links:-

Don't think that we will be using Win8 if we absolutely had to pay for it though ;) I think that the whole issue here is that not too many people are willing to pay for this OS 'cuz they don't think that it is worth it :(

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I mean there are many licenses which are not being sold but still being used - check out the following links:-

Don't think that we will be using Win8 if we absolutely had to pay for it though ;) I think that the whole issue here is that not too many people are willing to pay for this OS 'cuz they don't think that it is worth it :(

If I had to pay for it - would be using neither Windows 8 nor Windows 7 (for the price.) ;)

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Not using mine.

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You are welcome to send your key to me if you never plan to use it. :D :P :P :P

Not using mine.

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dave1977nj

Microsoft failed on windows 8 it's geared toward touch screens and they removed the start button.

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  • Administrator

I mean there are many licenses which are not being sold but still being used - check out the following links:-

Don't think that we will be using Win8 if we absolutely had to pay for it though ;) I think that the whole issue here is that not too many people are willing to pay for this OS 'cuz they don't think that it is worth it :(

Still, the marketshare being so low speaks by itself.

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I mean there are many licenses which are not being sold but still being used - check out the following links:-

Don't think that we will be using Win8 if we absolutely had to pay for it though ;) I think that the whole issue here is that not too many people are willing to pay for this OS 'cuz they don't think that it is worth it :(

Still, the marketshare being so low speaks by itself.

The market-share being intangible is only conjecture - the methodology of arriving at the 41% figure is flawed (as clearly depicted by those 2 links on just one site being the tip of the iceberg.)

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I mean there are many licenses which are not being sold but still being used - check out the following links:-

Don't think that we will be using Win8 if we absolutely had to pay for it though ;) I think that the whole issue here is that not too many people are willing to pay for this OS 'cuz they don't think that it is worth it :(

Still, the marketshare being so low speaks by itself.

The market-share being intangible is only conjecture - the methodology of arriving at the 41% figure is flawed (as clearly depicted by those 2 links on just one site being the tip of the iceberg.)

As I said, the % is even higher than that - because 58 million total approx amount counts pirated users - meaning - one, inspite of pirate activations, the usage is still 58 million (approx) and two, M$ license sold numbers are nothing but worthless.

I remember Apple doing this nonsense too. It used to say iPhone sold out at places, in real, it used to send only one iPhone at the stores, and then, they said they sold huge numbers, in real, they sold them to retailers, not customers - things were still lying in retail shops - not being sold to public yet (this, inspite of huge demand). What Microsoft is doing here is the same crappy policy to advertise themselves.

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As I said, the % is even higher than that - because 58 million total approx amount counts pirated users - meaning - one, inspite of pirate activations, the usage is still 58 million (approx) and two, M$ license sold numbers are nothing but worthless.

So, how can the % be higher when they've failed to factor for the major part that's been pirated? :huh:

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  • Administrator
As I said, the % is even higher than that - because 58 million total approx amount counts pirated users - meaning - one, inspite of pirate activations, the usage is still 58 million (approx) and two, M$ license sold numbers are nothing but worthless.

So, how can the % be higher when they've failed to factor for the major part that's been pirated? :huh:

100m license sold.

58m users.

= Only 41-42% license used.

100m license sold.

58m users.

Lets take 18m users from that number as pirates (just example).

= 40m licenses used.

= 60% of licenses sold aren't being used.

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100m license sold.

58m users.

= Only 41-42% license used.

100m license sold.

58m users.

Lets take 18m users from that number as pirates (just example).

= 40m licenses used.

= 60% of licenses sold aren't being used.

What's the reason for taking pirated licenses as sold? :frusty:

ps:

There are some other lacunae in the figures (which I'm not raising right now as it would dilute the point raised above.)

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  • Administrator
100m license sold.

58m users.

= Only 41-42% license used.

100m license sold.

58m users.

Lets take 18m users from that number as pirates (just example).

= 40m licenses used.

= 60% of licenses sold aren't being used.

What's the reason for taking pirated licenses as sold? :frusty:

ps:

There are some other lacunae in the figures (which I'm not raising right now as it would dilute the point raised above.)

You aren't getting the point.

I'm saying that the 58 million actual Windows 8 users do count pirates. Meaning, a lot more Windows 8 licenses have not been sold (than just 41%).

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You aren't getting the point.

I do not want to insult you, my dear - the term sold constitutes a 2-way traffic. Not only should your copy be activated - Microsoft should've also received the price for that copy which you activated (pirated or otherwise.)

You are getting confused between those two terms - sold & pirated.

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  • Administrator

Let me clear one thing here. The Microsoft's claim of sold 100m licenses includes sold to OEMs. Meaning, they doesn't necessarily be used or sold to common user, yet. If you go by the past, the OEMs keep an bunch of licenses with them, for future use. In this case, more than 40m million licenses have not been sold to or used by the common man, yet.

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The OEM has got nothing to do with demarcating sold & pirated copies and their usage thereof. <_<

Let me put it in another way:-

41% of all Windows 8 licenses sold aren't being used

From the above, title - The Author is mischievously tried to imply that (as an example) if Microsoft sells 100 Windows 8 licenses 41 of those Purchasers actually do not use Windows 8.

Please note the figures are estimated - yet, there no mention of the word approximate, anywhere (there's a blanket 41%.)

This may or may not be a fact - that's not possible to verify. However, I can prove the contrary . . . . . . . . . with solid facts.

I mean there are many licenses which are not being sold but still being used - check out the following links:-

What I'm pointing out simply is that Windows 8 is being used far more widely than the Author can ever imagine in his wildest of dreams because the above two links are indicative of merely nSane figures - testimonials of people who bothered to register here to post a thanks or make a query or any xyz other reason. What about the numerous majority of Windows 8 Users who did not register and/or did not make a post at either of those 2 links?

Moreover, thinking globally and moving on from nSane to all those various other sites where Windows 8 is being re-distributed - it's just the tip of the iceberg.

Contrary to what the Author would want the Readers to believe - the usage of Windows 8 is far more wider than projected. One may choose to believe an Outsider's estimated figures or one's own eyes.

Personally, I believe in reading between the lines.

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  • Administrator

My point is. The total marketshare that we are discussing here, which is 58 million approx, includes pirates and legit users. Meaning, even with pirated Windows, the Windows 8 market share is still so low.

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No, that's not the point (sorry it's not about market-share - it;'s about usage vis-à-vis sales, neglecting to take the most important factor, piracy into account, which has has got no relevance to sales) - unfortunately the Author's unsubstantiated point (& intention) on the subject does not match your point:-

The Author is mischievously tried to imply that (as an example) if Microsoft sells 100 Windows 8 licenses 41 of those Purchasers actually do not use Windows 8.
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You are welcome to send your key to me if you never plan to use it. :D :P :P :P

Not using mine.

You can buy it, I burnt it to disk and I also have 2 media keys.

Lets say £35 and I pay for U.K. postage?

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MidnightDistortions

Well i don't have Windows 8 so i'm not among the 59-100 million. :lol:

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