Last week Microsoft dropped a bombshell letting the world know not only has Windows 8 sold 40 million copies in a month, but it is being adopted faster than how quickly Windows 7 was adopted in 2009. Turns out that may not be exactly true.
Based off 15 billion web page views (from 3 million websites), web analytics firms StatCounter is reporting 1.31% of global internet traffic was conducted on a Windows 8 device during the four weeks that ended November 26 (i.e. a month after the launch of Windows 8). Comparatively, Windows 7 was sitting at 4.93% a month after its release in October 2009.
StatCounter’s numbers are in direct conflict to what Microsoft said/implied last week — Windows 8 is being upgraded to faster than Windows 7 in 2009. So either one of the firms is lying, or there is some explanation for the discrepancy. One plausible explanation is many people bought Windows 8 upgrades to take advantage of the time-limited $39.99 (or $15, if you purchased a new Windows 7 computer) promotion. These people simply bought Windows 8 and have not yet upgraded to it. Another is it could be that either a vast majority of Windows 8 users are staying offline or, when online, they aren’t visiting any of the 3 million websites StatCounter monitors. Unlikely, but possible.
Whatever the reason, the numbers being touted by Microsoft have yet to materialize in the online world. At least not according to StatCounter.
For what it is worth, StatCounter points out that both Windows 8 and Windows 7 had extensive beta testing phases; as such, both had some sort of adoption prior to official launch. A month after official launch, Windows 8 internet traffic has increased 3x whereas Windows 7 interest traffic increased 2x in 2009. Of course this could mean different things depending on how you look at it (e.g. it could mean more people tested Windows 7 than Windows 8), but it is a lifeline Microsoft will be glad to hold on to.