Microsoft have reported that the Windows 7 operating system is selling like no Windows operating system before it and the vast bulk of licenses being sold are “retail box” sales; not new corporate licenses.
Windows 7 licenses are being purchased at the giddy rate of 7 per second (420 per minute or 25,200 per hour). While a lot of these will be licenses with new computers a high percentage are also people upgrading from Windows XP and Vista—however I could not find numbers on this.
Windows 7 has only been available for eight months (since October 2009) yet has sold 2.3 times more non-corporate (i.e., home user and small business) licenses than Vista did in its 2 years and 10 months of prime-time availability.
Pre-release market research by Microsoft indicated that they could, based on beta release user feedback, expect Windows 7 to be more popular than Vista had been. I recall reading that Microsoft were forecasting possible sales for Windows 7 at a rate between 20 to 50 percent better then that of Windows Vista. That forecast was well and truly wrong; it was way too low!
There are three significant reasons for the success of Windows 7:
- Windows 7 loves running on notebooks, and notebooks and netbooks have been selling like chocolate coated doughnuts in family packs over the last 18 to 24 months; despite the after-effects of the Global Financial Crisis.
If you have a Windows notebook and it is not running Windows 7 then you really need to go see your favourite IT support person and point this terrible problem out to them.
- If your PC is running Windows XP reasonably well then, for the vast bulk of people, unlike Vista, you can expect Windows 7 to run just as well if not “appear” to run better (faster and smoother). So you don’t have to upgrade your PC in order to get some benefit out of upgrading your Windows XP PC to Windows 7.
Even so, if you want Windows 7 to shine then a small outlay of extra cash to upgrade to 2MB of RAM and a better graphics card can make a lot of difference; but check with your IT support person first (don’t waste money on a PC that is seriously not worth doing any upgrading to).
- If you PC is a “brand name” and was built in the five years before October 2009 then, in the vast bulk of cases, all the drivers you will need to make your PC work with Windows 7 will be included on the Windows 7 release disks; or will automatically download (from Microsoft) and install after the PC has been rebuilt. So you will not have to find your original disks or go searching all over the Web trying to find the right drivers.
One of the downsides for Windows XP users considering “upgrading” to Windows 7 is that there is no technical upgrade possible from Windows XP to Windows 7. While the standard Windows 7 upgrade license covers the upgrade from a licensing perspective it does not allow you to do an actual technical upgrade. I did a small post about this very issue back in March. You can check this post out here [Use Ctrl+Click to open this link in a new Tab].