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Windows 8 launch outdoes Windows 7's, says Microsoft bigwig

Schtum on Surface, no breakdown on boxes vs upgrades

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Microsoft's new operating system has sold 40 million units in its first month on sale, a Microsoft top bod revealed at a conference yesterday.

The 40m Windows 8 licenses have been sold since October 26 said Tami Reller, Chief Marketing and Financial Officer for Windows. Customers were upgrading to Win 8 faster than they had to Windows 7, she added.

Reller dropped the figure yesterday at an Annual Technology Conference held by Credit Suisse and reported on the Microsoft blog here. The figure means that sales of Windows 8 have outpaced Windows 7, which sold 60 million units in its first 10 weeks on sale at the end of 2009, as calculated by Reuters.

The figure does not distinguish between upgrades to Windows 8 ($40) and new buys of Windows 8 ($70) or sales of new machines with the software pre-installed, but Reller did indicate that customers were keener to upgrade now than they had been in 2009:

"Windows 8 upgrade momentum is outpacing that of Windows 7."

License sales do not equate automatically to users and many of the licenses will have been sold to PC manufacturers, which will pack the software on machines to be shipped out over the next few months. Reuters estimates that only 15 million users are currently using Windows 8.

Sales comparison numbers are hard to find in this area since Windows is the dominant operating system. But Apple's new Mac OS X downloads sat at 7 million on September 12, just over six weeks after it launched on 25th July. But coming off a much smaller install base, Macs are estimated to be only 8 per cent of the computer market - Apple's OS upgrade had greater traction.

No data were offered on sales of Microsoft's tablet, the Surface. ®

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