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Windows XP market share GROWS AGAIN, outstrips Win 8.1 surge

Death row OS reclaims title as Redmond's fastest-growing

The smart choice: opportunity from uncertainty

If you don't believe in the undead, think again: Windows XP may be just over a month from its much-publicised demise but is now Microsoft's fastest-growing operating system in terms of market share.

For that zombie-like assertion we can thank Netmarketshare's new data about operating system market share. As we reported in February, the outfit found that in January XP claimed 29.23 per cent of all the desktops it detected online.

As of February, the firm says, that's gone up to 29.53 per cent.

You read that right: XP's market share has gone up.

It even grew faster than any other Microsoft operating system.

Proof of that assertion comes from Vulture South's Tablo-matic 2099, which we've fed a few months of Netmarketshare data.

Oct 2013 Nov 2013 Dec 2013 Jan 2014 Feb 2014
Windows XP 31.24 31.22 28.98 29.23 29.53
Windows Vista 3.63 3.57 3.61 3.3 3.1
Windows 7 46.42 46.64 47.52 47.49 47.31
Windows 8 7.53 6.66 6.89 6.63 6.38
Windows 8.1 1.72 2.64 3.6 3.95 4.1

After adding market share of 0.3 per cent, that makes XP Microsoft's fastest-growing operating system as Windows 8.1 accelerated just .15 per cent.

There are all sorts of reasons Netmarketshare's data could be erroneous, but even if XP's market share isn't growing it is still extraordinary that it it remains installed on almost one in three PCs. Anecdotally, a great many XP machines reside in developing nations: your correspondent certainly saw a fair bit of XP in places like Cambodia, Thailand and Vietnam last year.

Even that scenario leaves millions of PCs in more developed nations running XP. It's conceivable many will get an upgrade, or be replaced, during March. It's also clear that come April 9th, those with new ways to attack XP will have plenty of targets. ®

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