StatCounter: Windows 7 overtakes XP

StatCounter: Windows 7 overtakes XP

Summary: Good news for Windows 7 fans ... but be careful about putting too much stock in a single data source.

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According to StatCounter, Windows 7 has finally (and clearly) overtaken XP in global usage.

Here's the good news for Windows 7 fans:

Let me zoom in on that crossover point for you:

The data shows that Windows 7 is now at 40.21% while XP is floundering with 38.64%.

Note: My colleague Zack Whittaker covered this earlier this month, but at that time the chart didn't show Windows 7 ahead of XP.

Breaking the data down is also interesting. Here is usage share for the US, showing Windows 7 with a huge lead over XP:

It's a different story in China where XP commands a massive lead over Windows 7:

Note this is just one data point. NetMarketShare, another popular web metrics firm, shows Windows 7 lagging behind XP significantly (32.42% versus 50.50%).

Personally, I've felt that NetmarketShare's data to be more reliable, but overall the best we can get out of these metrics is trends rather than actual numbers. I don't get too caught up on the numbers, and I suggest you don't either.

And the trend is clear. Windows 7 is gaining ground and that XP's usage share is eroding, but it's slow progress. Microsoft sold some 240 million Windows 7 licenses by the end of the first year and the company estimated that some 94% of new PCs would ship with Windows 7 by the end of the year.

[UPDATE: Added data for different countries]

(Hat tip to Tom Warren at Winrumors)

Topics: Windows, Microsoft, Operating Systems, Software

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29 comments
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  • RE: StatCounter: Windows 7 overtakes XP

    This is good news for more than Windows 7 fans, this finally means that those XP holdouts no longer have a leg to stand on AND the world's most insecure OS is no longer on the majority of PCs.
    The one and only, Cylon Centurion
    • RE: StatCounter: Windows 7 overtakes XP

      @Cylon Centurion Actually Windows 7 is not as secure as you think. All the prompts and notifications you get while using the system can give you a feel of security; that's what its for. To make you feel secure. My job just patched it's Windows 7 machines from the WSUS server and we received 1300 patches since Windows 7 was released. That's sad. Yes - - Win7 is on most Desktops because that's the industry, but Microsoft is competing against its own OS's not the rest of the industry. Win8 is due soon; will the market offer two installation options? or just one installation? Most likely one. I can make a report say anything I want, but how you interpret it, that's a different story. A picture speaks.. how many words?
      billaking
      • RE: StatCounter: Windows 7 overtakes XP

        @billaking

        So you're saying that Windows 7 is insecure because of the number of patches. I just want to make sure that I'm reading your (poor) argument correctly.
        Michael Alan Goff
      • RE: StatCounter: Windows 7 overtakes XP

        @billaking

        Riiiight. That's why there <A HREF="http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9218722/Windows_XP_PCs_breed_rootkit_infections">various</A> articles out there saying XP is malware haven. Surely, <A HREF="http://www.winrumors.com/windows-7-malware-infection-rate-significantly-lower-than-windows-xp/">Windows 7 can't be</A> as secure as everyone thinks. I'm sure all those extra security "features" are just wasted "bloat". ;)
        The one and only, Cylon Centurion
      • Made up number

        @billaking

        There weren't 1300 patches for Windows 7 since release. Considering there are, at most, 10 updates a month you'd be looking at 250 patches since release. And that's assuming you patched Windows 7 and then installed SP1, which would contain quite a few of those updates already.

        Windows 7 is quite a bit more secure than Windows XP. You'd be hard pressed to find anyone who knows about security to say otherwise. And you obviously don't qualify as someone who knows about security.
        LiquidLearner
      • RE: StatCounter: Windows 7 overtakes XP

        @billaking : 1300 patches for Windows 7? Ya right. show me where i can find this list of 1300 patches. Plus, if true, how many are for security and how many are non-security [i.e. fixes, enhancements]. surely you are not saying that an updatie for time zones or an update for SD card is a bad thing?

        If insecurity [or bugginess] is how you judge things how about OS X with 500+ MB patches every 2 months?
        Gisabun
    • RE: StatCounter: Windows 7 overtakes XP

      @Cylon Centurion wrote:
      "the world's most insecure OS

      Shouldn't this read "the world's most insecure OS, by default". Perhaps, if you are incapable of securing Windows XP, you should get some ... err, education.

      o Patch the OS and applications
      o Apply least privilege
      o Whitelist your applications
      o Upgrade to IE 8 or switch to an alternate browser
      o Disable autostart for all media

      Just to name a few.
      Rabid Howler Monkey
      • RE: StatCounter: Windows 7 overtakes XP

        @Rabid Howler Monkey

        You just answered your own statement. "By default". I'm not the issue here. The issues is the various users of Windows XP all these years. Joe User is almost guaranteed to keep his machine in the default state it came in. XP included.
        The one and only, Cylon Centurion
      • RE: StatCounter: Windows 7 overtakes XP

        @Cylon Centurion wrote:
        "Joe User is almost guaranteed to keep his machine in the default state it came in.

        A valid point for most consumers and small businesses. But, why not include some tips for making XP more secure (or less insecure)? Especially for those hurting in this poor economy and unable to afford an upgrade to a Windows 7-based PC.

        As for the enterprise, most Windows IT pros know how to tighten up XP security and Joe User has little to say about it.
        Rabid Howler Monkey
      • RE: StatCounter: Windows 7 overtakes XP

        @Rabid Howler Monkey

        You would think. Then the US Air Force had to go and <A HREF="http://www.theatlanticwire.com/national/2011/10/virus-infecting-us-drone-fleet-came-mafia-wars/43623/">let users online to Facebook</A>. Worse yet, they forgot to lock out the machines from accepting removable media. Ooops.
        The one and only, Cylon Centurion
      • RE: StatCounter: Windows 7 overtakes XP

        @Rabid Howler Monkey : Agree Problems are from the users who open up Emails they should have or agreed to install anything that pops up on their screen [or get fake messages from Microsoft regarding fake issues on their PC].
        Gisabun
  • RE: StatCounter: Windows 7 overtakes XP

    smash hit. period.
    neonspark
  • RE: StatCounter: Windows 7 overtakes XP

    I gotta laugh a little. "Other" OS is ahead of Linux.
    Admin71
    • RE: StatCounter: Windows 7 overtakes XP

      @Bookmark71 I am with you on that one. What a joke. This report is one sided. People don't realize that the PC market is Microsoft and they are in competition with their own OS's - - not MAC or Linux.
      billaking
      • RE: StatCounter: Windows 7 overtakes XP

        @billaking One graph says OSX is going up, the other going down. Unless that's due to not tracking Lion adoption, the chart says 10.5 and 10.6.

        And what is "other"? Previous versions of Windows? 2000, 98, 95? It's scary to think those have a slight trend upward. All this really shows is that Microsoft has a hard time getting people to leave their legacy operating systems.
        Admin71
  • RE: StatCounter: Windows 7 overtakes XP

    Good news indeed. Microsoft Windows 7 does offer a lot more over its Windows XP counterpart. One thing you can take away from this is people are staying with Microsoft Windows.
    LoverockDavidson_-24231404894599612871915491754222
    • RE: StatCounter: Windows 7 overtakes XP

      @LoverockDavidson_ Depends on what side of the field you play on. If a user then it might be great for those who are unwise about their internet browsing habits - - for break and fix technicians a nightmare when doing hardware upgrades - - for software developers who need to program against classes and other things a disaster. You must be a user. - - have you seen TRON the movie. LOL - - that's you.
      billaking
      • Good try

        @billaking

        If you really need to up your computer to run Win7, you likely have a computer that can barely run WinXP.
        Michael Alan Goff
      • RE: StatCounter: Windows 7 overtakes XP

        @billaking
        I don't think its a nightmare for anyone. Upgrades are not that hard if you decide to go that route. Open the case and stick in some new hardware. Developers have had access to Microsoft Windows 7 for a while, they should be familiar with it by now.
        LoverockDavidson_-24231404894599612871915491754222
      • RE: StatCounter: Windows 7 overtakes XP

        @billaking,<br>I can't make sense of your post. <br><br>"for software developers who need to program against classes and other things a disaster."<br><br>Program against classes and other things? What does that mean? I can't tell what you mean by class in this context, and what are other things?
        bmonsterman