The numbers give us the best view of the market running Windows Store apps, and would, therefore, be particularly accurate for Windows Phones, which can only run store apps.
This month’s Windows Phone OS numbers are interesting for one reason – the fact that 79.1% of Windows Phone users run a pre-Windows 10 Mobile OS, the vast majority Windows Phone 8.1.
Windows Phone has exited support on the 11th July 2017, which means, according to Microsoft;
As of July 11, 2017, Windows Phone 8.1 users are no longer eligible to receive new security updates, non-security hotfixes, free assisted support options, or online technical content updates from Microsoft for free. Third parties or paid support programs may provide ongoing support, but it is important to recognize that Microsoft support will not publicly provide updates or patches for Windows Phone 8.1.
This month device backup became unsupported, with Microsoft saying:
Automatic or manual creation of new device backups for setting and some applications will continue for 3 months, ending October 11, 2017. Other services including photo uploads, restoring a device from an existing device backup and the Store will continue to work for at least another 12 months from end of support, after which time, services will start to be discontinued.
What is interesting is that these users are actively using apps and presumably the web with handsets which must be at least two years old. A bit like Windows XP, these devices are likely not being patched for a variety of recently discovered exploits such as KRACK but are probably protected by security through obscurity.
Given the risks of using outdated software, should Windows Phone 8.1 users be encouraged to move to better supported operating systems? Let us know below.