Windows XP just won't die: Remains most used OS in April

Summary:Windows XP's market share is falling, while Windows 7 is slowly rising. But it may not be until 2013 where the latest operating system overtakes the decade-old software.

Windows 7 is catching up, and Windows Vista is almost dead in the water, but Windows XP just seems to linger on.

Despite Microsoft setting a firm deadline for when it ceases to support for the aging operating system --- April 8, 2014 --- the majority of users refuse to upgrade the decade-old software, according to Net Applications.

The number of those using Windows XP is falling albeit slowly, while figures show an increasing number of Windows 7 users. But it may not be until late 2012 --- or more likely early 2013 --- until there is a crossover of the operating systems.

Analytics company StatCounter currently pegs Windows XP at 31.8 percent, and Windows 7 at 47.5 percent, but the two firms rely on different methods of totalling up their figures.

With Windows 8 set to divide the enterprise, and with patches, fixes, and updates for Windows XP set to expire in April 2014, it appears likely that businesses will eventually upgrade to Windows 7 rather than jumping straight in to Microsoft's upcoming release.

The latest Windows version is seen as the safe middle-ground between Windows Vista, which was heavily criticised for its poor performance and compatibility issues, and Windows 8, which its vast user interface differences may require extensive user retraining.

But for the developing regions, Microsoft could keep Windows XP in play for those running old PC technology. It remains a great operating system, and though the company moves to set it aside in favour of new revenue streams in future Windows upgrades, it could still offer a lease of life to those in the emerging markets.

Image, data credit: Net Applications.

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Topics: Operating Systems, Microsoft, Software, Windows

About

Zack Whittaker writes for ZDNet, CNET, and CBS News. He is based in New York City.

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