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Windows 10 growth hits the brakes

Gregg Keizer | March 2, 2016
After an explosive January, Windows 10's gains slow dramatically -- even though Microsoft has switched on upgrade auto-delivery.

In the grand scheme, a month's slowdown means little: Windows 10 has been, and will certainly continue to be, a success, if only because of the one-year free upgrade offer to consumers and many small businesses.

What was interesting about the growth slowdown was that it came during the month Microsoft said it had enabled automatic downloads of the Windows 10 upgrade to PCs running Windows 7 or Windows 8.1. That move, which had been announced in October, delivers the upgrade bits to eligible PCs via Windows Update, then initiates the installation process.

Microsoft has said that users could refuse the Windows 10 upgrade once installation begins, but has declined to say whether the upgrade starts in all cases, detail how the user authorization process plays out, and whether -- after a customer declines the upgrade -- it presents itself again later.

The assumption was that this would result in a major uptick in Windows 10's growth, but by the accounts of Net Applications, StatCounter and DAP, that hasn't yet happened.

 

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