We have been monitoring the market share growth of Windows 10 since its release in 2015, and have long been waiting for the day the operating system overtakes Windows 7, as it would finally allow developers to start working towards making the Windows store their default route of software distribution, which would have massive knock-on effects in terms of developer interest and app availability.
According to veteran market share watcher Netmarketshare that day is still some way off, but today Tanmay Ganacharya, Principal Group Manager, Windows Defender Research, has confirmed that that data is inaccurate and that Windows 10 has in fact already overtaken Windows 7.
From June to November, Windows 7 devices were 3.4 times more likely to encounter ransomware compared to Windows 10 devices. Considering that Windows 10 has a much larger install base than Windows 7, this difference in ransomware encounter rate is significant.
At the end of November 2017, Microsoft confirmed there are 600 million monthly active Windows 10 users (less than Instagram). That would make the Windows 7 installed base smaller, and potentially mean there are less than 1.5 billion monthly active Windows users at present.
It is notable that even Statcounter still has Windows 7 ahead of Windows 10, if only by a fraction of a percent, but presumably, Microsoft has more direct and accurate ways of measuring market share of their operating systems.
What do our readers think of this news? Is it good news because developers can now start focusing on the Windows Store and Windows 10 API, or bad news because Windows is a smaller platform than we thought? Let us know below.
Via Tero Alhonen