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Microsoft's NEW OS now runs on HALF of ALL desktop PCs

Gotcha! It's the five-year-old Windows 7, not touchy 8.1

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

One of Microsoft’s newest operating systems now runs on half of desktops – but it’s not the one Redmond might have wished.

Windows 7 accounted for 50.06 per cent of operating system market share in May according to Netmarketshare’s running monthly tally.

The operating system expanded its share from 49.27 per cent in April. Microsoft’s Windows 8.1 scored a milestone of its own last month, as it also eclipsed Windows 8.

Windows 8.1 claimed 6.35 per cent of desktops, up from 5.88 per cent in April, and overtaking Windows 8 whose share fell from 6.36 per cent to 6.29 percentage points.

Windows 8.1 was released in October 2013 but it is Windows 7, which was released in 2009, that is growing the most rapidly – despite being on the market for longer.

Windows 7 grew by 0.79 percentage points versus 0.47 for Windows 8.1. Given Windows 7 has been around longer, its growth should – theoretically - be slowing.

Windows 8.1 came a year after Windows 8 was supposed to usher Microsoft and Windows users into a glorious world of touch-based, slabletised computing.

Windows 8 was Microsoft's big answer to iOS and Android, iPads and, er, Android. Windows 8.1 was the compromise option, intended to bring back desktop-like features cast aside in the construction of Windows 8.

It’s Windows 7, however, that appears to appeal to most individuals and businesses who are sticking with the traditional mouse-and-keyboard paradigm.

They are going with Windows 7 as customers slowly replace machines running Windows XP.

That operating system last month saw its feather-like descent continue, with an earlier withdrawal of security support apparently not causing people to jump ship en masse.

The number of desktops running Windows XP in May fell by 1.02 percentage points from the month before, landing at 25.27 per cent. ®

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