Windows® 7 market share increases but Windows® XP still no. 1
Can Windows 7 hold its ground against new launches such as Windows 8 and Mac OS X Mountain Lion?
According to a report published by web analytics company NetApplications, the global market share of Windows 7 increased to 38 percent in February 2012 as compared to 36 percent in January 2012. On the other hand, Windows XP registered a decline of 2 percent. While in January 2012, Windows XP’s share was 47 percent, it dropped to 45 percent in February 2012. Although Windows XP has been losing customers to Windows 7, it’s still the number one OS. As per the market trends, Windows 7 is growing steadily. But will it be able to hold its ground with Windows 8 and Mac OS X Mountain Lion scheduled to be launched soon?
Windows 7 may lose market share in 2012
In the first twenty four hours of the release of Windows 8 Consumer Preview, the new operating system which is in testing stage, reported more than 1 million downloads. People’s enthusiastic response to Windows 8 Consumer Preview indicates that the OS will be a big hit when the retail version is unveiled later in 2012. Windows 8 will surely eat into the market share of Windows 7, but who’s complaining – Microsoft will be all too happy with the success of Windows 8.
Competition from Mac OS X Mountain Lion
Apple has launched the developer preview of OS X Mountain Lion, which supposedly bridges the gap between its desktop operating system OS X and the mobile operating system, iOS. It seems to be in direct competition with Windows 8, which incorporates the Metro user interface that was introduced by Microsoft in Windows Phone 7. Mac OS X 10.6 and OS X 10.7 accounted for 5.7 percent market share in February 2012. As both OS X Mountain Lion and Windows 8 are meant for the next generation of computing devices, it will be difficult for Windows 7 to keep increasing its market share. The growth of Windows 7 is likely to slow down.
Windows XP: The road ahead
Windows XP’s market share has been decreasing over the past several months and that was expected. The official support from Microsoft for Windows XP will expire in April 2014. The company is itself advising Windows XP customers that they should now migrate to Windows 7. In a report released by Gartner in September 2011, it was stated that enterprises running Windows XP should adhere to their Windows 7 migration plans and not wait for Windows 8.