It's been a while since Microsoft execs shared an official count of licenses of Windows 8 sold. Last time we got a tally was in May 2013, when the Softies said the company had sold more than 100 million licenses.
On February 13, however, Microsoft's Executive Vice President of Marketing Tami Reller, casually dropped an updated figure of 200 million Windows 8 licenses sold. Reller made that remark during an appearance at the Goldman Sachs Technology & Internet Conference. (I listened to a live Webcast.)
Microsoft's silence since last May about Windows 8's sales rate has been taken by many as proof that the company isn't selling Windows 8 as quickly as it had hoped and expected.
Microsoft's "licenses sold" numbers are "sell in" numbers. That means these figures include sales of licenses to OEMs, as well as Windows 8 upgrades. They don't include copies of Windows 8 sold via volume-licensing agreements. The "licenses sold" numbers may or may not also include Windows RT license numbers. (Microsoft officials have declined to say.)
During her 30 minutes of remarks and answers to questions at the conference, Reller didn't mention the imminent arrival of Windows 8.1 Update 1 by name. She did remark on the "more rapid cadence" on which the Windows team has been delivering, while adding there are "more things coming just around the corner."
Update: A Microsoft spokesperson confirmed Reller's 200 million Windows 8 licenses sold figure with the following statement:
“Windows 8 has surpassed 200 million licenses sold, and we continue to see momentum. This number includes Windows licenses that ship on a new tablet or PC, as well as upgrades to Windows 8. The figure does not include volume license sales to enterprise. Windows is a central part of life for more than 1.5 billion people around the world, and we are looking forward to the future.”