Windows is by far no longer Microsoft’s biggest business, but it remains our main contact point with the giant software company.
For an ever increasing number of mobile-first people, however, the desktop has become completely irrelevant. With more than 2 billion Android users and more than 1 billion iOS users, it is clear that the majority of those using personal computing devices are not using PCs anymore.
In September 2017, almost a year ago, Satya Nadella told Bloomberg there were 1 billion Windows users, but the company later issues an official statement updating the number to 1.5 billion.
Today Microsoft updated their Microsoft by the Numbers page (as noticed by Neowin), which once again reasserted the 1.5 billion Windows-powered PCs in use number. We do not, of course, know when this number is dated from, but given that the site has just been refreshed after lying fallow for more than a year we assume it is pretty recent.
If the number is new Microsoft deserves credit for seeing off the challenges to their legacy business from Google with their Chrome devices and Apple with iPad for Business, both which has been threatening to invade their enterprise strong-hold. As we noted in our editorial yesterday, Microsoft has in fact been growing their enterprise business, seeing sales of the Pro version of their Windows software increase 8% YoY in their recent financials.
Conversely, however, we have seen a continuing drop in sales of their consumer line, but we are hopeful that Microsoft’s initiative to make Windows 10 PCs work better with phones, and their plans to bring game streaming and Xbox Game Pass to PCs will make those devices more relevant to consumers.
So, in this case, Microsoft earns points for simple standing still, but with computing clearly growing without PCs, there remains a need for a Microsoft-first solution on mobile – maybe a Microsoft-powered Android phone with Google Play?