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Microsoft claims Windows 10 is its fastest-growing OS ever

Mark Hachman | Jan. 5, 2016
Microsoft says that it sold out of the Lumia 950 and 950XL, and that the Surface Book will be sold in more markets worldwide.

windows 10

Microsoft said Monday morning that over 200 million devices per month are running Windows 10, adding that its new operating system is on its “fastest growth trajectory” of any OS it’s ever shipped.

Third-party firms had claimed that Microsoft’s Windows 10 powered about 165 million PCs, or 10 percent of the market, by the end of 2015, slightly less than Microsoft’s own tallies. Microsoft said Monday that Windows 10’s growth outpaced Windows 8 by nearly 400 percent—as well as the earlier, much loved Windows 7 by 140 percent.

“We continue to be excited—and humbled—by the incredible response to Windows 10,” Yusuf Mehdi, the corporate vice president responsible for Windows and Windows devices, wrote in a blog post in advance of the CES show in Las Vegas. Microsoft isn’t expected to make any major announcements at CES, although many of its partners will show Windows 10 PCs.

“We are even more excited that these customers are loving Windows 10,” Mehdi added. “Overall, we are seeing significantly higher customer satisfaction with Windows 10 than any prior version of Windows.”

Little love for Edge

Microsoft’s new OS allows it to gather some anonymized data on its users, including the amount of time that customers have used Windows 10. Microsoft said that in December, customers had spent over 11 billion hours with Windows 10, along with 44.5 billion minutes (742 million hours) with Microsoft Edge. (That means that customers spent about 7 percent of their time with Microsoft Edge.) Customers have asked Cortana over 2.5 billion questions since the launch of Windows 10, Microsoft added. 

Microsoft also said that customers had asked 30 percent more queries of Bing per Windows 10 device versus prior versions of Windows—not that surprising, as Bing is the default search engine for Cortana and Edge. Over 82 billion photos have been viewed using the Photos app, Microsoft added, and gamers spent 4 billion hours playing PC games—streaming 6.6 million hours of Xbox One games to the PC, to boot. In fact, Microsoft claimed that 2015 was the best year in Xbox’s history, in terms of engagement and overall sales.

Microsoft also said that it saw a twofold increase in paid app sales from PC and tablet customers. In December, Windows 10 generated more than a 4.5x increase in revenue per device, it added, compared to Windows 8. Microsoft didn’t release actual numbers, however, nor go into any detail about how it compared Windows 8 versus Windows 10 app sales. Still, the fact that it’s actually generating app revenue is noteworthy.

lumia 950 
The Lumia 950 and the Lumia 950XL apparently sold out, according to Microsoft. Credit: Rob Schultz


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