As support ends, Windows 7 users head for the exits
PC owners who had been putting off the decision to upgrade or retire their old Windows 7 PCs woke up suddenly in January, as support for the older OS officially ended. Data from multiple sources shows a sharp decline in the Windows 7 population, as Windows 10 usage continues to grow.
Usage statistics from the United States Government's Digital Analytics Program (DAP) show that traffic from PCs running Windows 7 dropped by roughly 4.2% in January, from 18.9% to 15.7%, while the corresponding figure for Windows 10 PCs went up nearly the same amount, from 75.8% to 79.4%.
That's a striking increase from the average 1.5% monthly decline in Windows 7 usage over the previous five months.
Other widely cited sources confirm the phenomenon.
Figures released by Net Market Share, for example, showed that Windows 7 usage dropped by 4.4% for the month, as Windows 10 traffic climbed 4.6%.
The corresponding figures from StatCounter Global Stats were less dramatic but showed the same trend, with Windows 7 traffic declining and Windows 10 usage increasing by just under 2% each.
(It's worth noting that Net Market Share acknowledged a flaw in its data that caused iPads running iPadOS 13 to be counted instead as MacOS devices from September to December 2019. The company says it has "mostly corrected" the errors but was unable to completely identify and correct the data for that period. Those kind of errors make it difficult to consider their data as authoritative.)