Windows 10 adoption keeps slowing as Microsoft plans aggressive upgrades

Windows 10 adoption keeps slowing as Microsoft plans aggressive upgrades

Usage share continues to slow, but that could change once Microsoft turns Windows 10 into a “Recommended” upgrade.

Jared Newman | @onejarednewman
PCWorld Nov 2, 2015 7:26 AM

After getting off to a speedy start, Windows 10 adoption is continuing to flatten out.

In October, NetApplications estimated 7.94 market share among desktop operating systems for Windows 10, based on unique visits to a sampling of websites. That’s up from 6.63 percent in September, and 5.21 percent in August.

StatCounter, another metrics firm that measures usage share by pageviews on sample sites, estimated 9 percent usage for Windows 10 in October. That’s compared to 7.64 percent in September, and 5.38 percent in August.

Windows 7 remains the dominant desktop operating system according to both metrics firms, with 55.71 percent share according to NetApplications, and 50.26 percent according to StatCounter.

Why this matters: By offering free upgrades for consumers through next fall, Microsoft is hoping to break the cycle in which the most popular Windows versions are outdated or unsupported. From Windows 10 onward, Microsoft will deliver automatic updates, while making money through built-in services such as the Edge browser, Bing search, and the Cortana virtual assistant. The revenue plan isn’t going terribly, as Bing finally became profitable last quarter, but the latest usage data shows that older Windows versions aren’t going away anytime soon.

Automatically recommended

The slowing uptake of Windows 10 may explain why Microsoft is planning to get more aggressive with upgrades. Sometime next year, Microsoft will re-categorize Windows 10 as a “Recommended” update, rather than an optional one.

That means users who’ve chosen to receive recommended updates will download the Windows 10 installation files automatically. Depending on the user’s settings, the installation might also begin automatically. (Microsoft says users will still have an option to back out of the installation, and can roll back to a previous version of Windows anytime within the first 31 days.)

While Windows 10 is largely an improvement over previous versions, users may not want to upgrade for a variety of reasons, including software compatibility or comfort with their current version. The automatic download could also cause problems for users on metered connections, who will no longer be able to get automatic security patches without also downloading several gigabytes’ worth of Windows 10 installation files.

One comment

  • theunhivedmind

    It seems some people have already been forced to accept a Windows 10 upgrade. I would suggest you make an image of a clean install of Windows 7, 8 or 8.1. To make a reliable image I suggest you look at software like Acronis True Image. You should also make an image of your newly installed windows after you’ve loaded up all your programs so you have two images one which is fresh and another which is loaded with up to date software. Why the latter? So if you need to regularly replace the OS using the images then you will be up and running as was and is in a matter of minutes. Why? Well if at some point Microsoft manages to force updates in days or hours then you can immediately load your image which works well against bugs or infections etc. Make sure you keep your images on external drives and in the cloud but only use the cloud if you’ve imaged without passwords being stored. Now you have your images I suggest you do an upgrade to Windows 10 and once the upgrade is added you then download any updates for the OS before making a Windows 10 image also stored externally. Once you’ve upgraded to Windows 10 you simply go back to your Windows 7, 8, 8.1 image and carry on as usual using one of those versions you’re happy with. By downloading Windows 10 you’ve made sure you have a free copy and I believe fooled Microsoft and the computer that the upgrade is complete and thus when using an old Windows you may no longer get forced into an upgrade as the computer believes you have Windows 10 codes when it comes to OEM machines with stored Windows codes in these UEFI bios like systems. I would suggest you trial some of the Linux distributions to see which best suit your PC and the move over and install your favourite. Be careful not to rush in and use a nice looking distribution which uses a Linux you don’t understand such as Arch. Always look for a Linux which respects your computers resources. For myself and using a laptop then I’d go for Crunchbang continuum known as BunsenLabsOS which is based on the Jessy release from Debian. We must now move away from Windows because all we’ve ever feared is now out in the open even in the Microsoft contract/policy. I suggest people start listening to Richard Stallman and think hard before using non-proprietary software or software just because someone else uses it.

    .·´ ¸.·★¨) ¸.·☆¨)
    ★(¸.·´ (¸.*´ ¸.·´
    `·-☆ The Unhived Mind

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