Windows 8.x usage declines

Windows 8.x usage declines

Summary: Net Applications has found that Windows 8.x actually lost user share in June 2014, while Windows 7 has really been the operating system to gain from XP's end of support.


Whether it indicates a hiccup or the first sign of a trend, Microsoft can't be happy that Net Applications found in its June 2014 operating system survey that Windows 8 and 8.1 dropped from May's 12.6 percent to 12.5 percent.

June 2014 OS Market share
Windows 8.x declined in June, while Windows 7 is the operating system that's gained on XP's end of support.

Despite the improvements in Windows 8.1, and its updates, Windows 8.x still hasn't proven popular. This is undoubtedly one reason Microsoft is pushing forward quickly with its release plans for Windows 9, Threshold.

Curiously, even though Windows 8.1 has been praised as being a significant improvement over Windows 8, Windows 8.1, at 6.6 percent, isn't much more popular than Windows 8 with its 5.9 percent.

Windows itself, with 91.5 percent, remains the dominant desktop operating system. Indeed, Windows 7, which moved up to 50.55 percent, saw its fourth straight month of gains.

Thus, business users seem to have been moving from the no longer supported Windows XP to Windows 7 instead of Windows 8. In March 2014, before XP support expired, XP had 27.7 percent of marketshare compared to Windows 7's 48.8 percent and Windows 8.x's combined 11.3 percent.

By June, XP dropped to 25.3 percent from March, a decline of 2.4 percent. Windows 8.x had gained a mere 1.2 percent during the same period compared to Windows 7's 1.75 percent growth.

Why is 2009's Windows 7 still gaining marketshare? In part, it's because some OEMs such as HP, started advertising the availability of Windows 7 systems. More simply, Windows 8, particularly with its Metro interface, has simply never attracted users.

As for the other desktop and laptop operating systems, Mac OS X 10.9 Mavericks is the most popular, single non-Windows operating system with 3.95 percent. While enormously popular in datacenters, clouds, mobile devices, and supercomputers, traditional desktop Linux distributions such as Fedora, Mint and Ubuntu, with a combined 1.7 percent, remain a non-contender on the PC.

Related Stories:

Topics: Windows, Microsoft, Windows 8

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.


Log in or register to join the discussion
  • As a percentage or as an absolute number?

    As a percentage, that's just the vagueries of math, as the enterprise Win7 ramp up kicks in. Microsoft would only have to be alarmed if the absolute number of Win8x users went down.
    • they only give %, not hard numbers

      and I'd assume the absolute # didn't go down. it would still indicate both a low rate of upgrades to W8 and that PC sales are remaining low though. a low # of upgrades isn't surprising- enterprise always updates 1 version behind. the low PC sales is the more worrying issue, and isn't likely to rebound. low PC sales is a new normal.
      • Vista

        I am surprised at the percent that Vista still has.
        • At this point

          It's pretty much windows 7. After the first service pack, and some time on the market to allow new drivers to be made, Vista really isn't that bad. If I had a vista license and no windows 7 license, I'd probably stay on vista too.
        • Nothing wrong with with Vista....

          ....once the Hardware manufacturers got their act together. Given the choice of Windows 8 or Vista I would take the Vista option any day.

          Meanwhile I am quite happy with OS X thank you very much.
          • Not a chance

            Vistas has the old dated taskbar. Windows 8 brings configuration syncing, taskbar across all your monitors, and hyper-V integration. OS X is fine if your usage is consumer toys.
            Buster Friendly
          • And a stupid looking flat interface

            which reminds of the days of Windows 3.1 and CGA resolutions and colors.

            Though I admit the improvements are there in 8.x, the irksome interface is flipping you off every second you look at it.
          • Really?

            Really? The complaint is no drop shadows on the icons? Still wearing acid washed jeans and a member's only jacket?
            Buster Friendly
          • Flat Interface

            I dunno, Win8.1 seems to have fixed enough things that it's a competent replacement for Win7. I like the Aero interface the best but my main machine is on 8.1. Never see the metro and the desktop really is OK. It takes a slight bit of getting used to but isn't bad enough to get your pants in a wad particularly if you're running Start 8.
            Max Peck
          • Huh?

            OSX has a Unix beginning. You can get a proper Unix shell and do much more than a few Windows widgets allows.
          • Re: OS X is fine if your usage is consumer toys….

            No more than verbal diarrhoea clearly you have not worked with stand you are no more than a Redmond worshipper.
          • Correction….

            … and you are no more than a Redmond worshipper.
          • So you've never used OS X, then?

            Since you don't use toys?

            Then how do you know OS X is a consumer toy?

            Hmmm, are you feeling a tad t-r-o-l-l-i-s-h today?
          • this is not MacRumors

            You cannot prefer Vista over Windows 8 anyday without a healthy dose of ignorance and a hatewagon membership.
          • or until Microsoft reneged

            on the "exclusive content" for Ultimate owners. Talk about an expensive bait and switch ripoff... yeah, capitalism is great!
        • Why surprised?

          Vista, after SP2, is, for most intents and purposes, the same as 7, save for a few arcan abilities in 7, which replaced a few losses from Vista. In most cases, having adequate hardware meant that after the second service package, the OS was trouble free and great to use - I still have 3 machines out of 9 running it - it works well and it's just not a big deal to not have the improved skinning of 7's interface.
    • Standard spin

      Yea, that's standard spin method to try to support a false headline.
      Buster Friendly
      • Pure click bait (but it works)

        He takes a one-month estimate and focuses on a tiny drop (0.1 percentage points) that's probably well within the margin of error of NetApplications' estimates. It's a joke to start with, and even if there is something behind it, the obvious driver would be enterprise sales.

        Unfortunately, the author is a dishonest hack, who's known for refusing to correct incorrect statements, even when provided with authoritative sources. Not only does he refuse to correct his mistakes, but he repeats them, knowing that what he's writing is false.

        One of the problems with journalism generally, and especially blogs, is that there's no peer review, so dishonest hacks can get a lot of attention and ad revenue (no wonder they love Google!) by publishing this sort of rubbish.
        • No doubt...

'll let us know if things improve.
          John L. Ries
          • If journalism improves?

            Not bloody likely, when there's effectively no cost (especially in the US) to printing blatantly false statements, never mind misleading and unscientific rubbish like this. As long as they generate ad revenue, they can write whatever they like. Markets don't really work for things like journalism, as a comparison of the private US media with state media in other liberal democracies makes clear.