Why it matters: The number of active devices running Windows 10 is getting ever closer that one billion target. Microsoft has announced that the latest version of its OS now has over 800 million installs, just a few months after becoming the world's most popular desktop operating system.
The news comes after Net Market Share announced in January that Windows 10’s worldwide market share (39.22 percent) had finally passed Windows 7 (36.09 percent). This had been on the cards for a while, as shown by Windows 10 reaching 700 million devices last year.
When Windows 10 launched in 2015, Microsoft said it hoped the software would be installed on one billion devices by 2018. A year later, the company admitted this vision was overly optimistic, but it’s now just 200 million installs away from that original target. If Windows 10’s popularity continues to increase at the current rate, it should be running on one billion devices before the end of 2019.
One factor that will be driving Windows 10 uptake is Windows 7 entering its final 12 months of extended support. From January 14, 2020, only paying businesses and education customers will receive extended security updates (ESUs) for Windows 7, and they don’t come cheap.
Thank you to all our customers and partners for helping us achieve 800 million #Windows10 devices and the highest customer satisfaction in the history of Windows. https://t.co/G3CRdkFoPT pic.twitter.com/je9kvBvYhj— Yusuf Mehdi (@yusuf_i_mehdi) 7 March 2019
In addition to revealing the latest figures, Microsoft Corp’s Corporate Vice President of Modern Life & Devices, Yusuf Mehdi, tweeted that Windows 10 had the highest customer satisfaction in the history of Windows. That may come as a surprise, given the questions over its approach to privacy a few years ago. Since then, however, Microsoft has given users more control over how their data is used. The company also admitted that the malware-like tactics it introduced to get people to upgrade went too far.