Microsoft Windows XP 310x

Windows 7 still controls a 50 percent-plus market share, however.

Windows XP, despite all the dust it’s accumulated over the last 13 years, has kept the Number Two seat warm all these years behind Windows 7. Flash back to this time last year, and everyone’s favorite 32-bit operating system from Microsoft was sitting pretty with a 19.3 percent market share (compared to Windows 7’s 51.81 percent).

But the times? They are a-changin’, friend.

According to OS tracker StatCounter, Windows XP has finally been overtaken by Windows 8.1. November 2014 saw Windows 7, 8.1, and XP with market shares of 50.34, 10.95, and 10.69 percents, respectively.

Apple’s OS X (version unspecified) is also on the chart with an 8.11 percent share.

So where did the OS shift come from? Windows 8.1 has been on a serious upswing since the summer, as it’s gone from 6.75 percent in July to its double-digit position today. The surge can likely be attributed to two serious sale seasons: Back to school at the end of the summer, and the current holiday season (which if we’re being honest typically starts before Halloween for many shoppers).

Another, smaller contributor could be the Windows 10 news, as anyone running Windows 8.1 will get a free upgrade to Microsoft’s next OS. If you’re running Windows 7, you could buy Windows 8.1, enjoy (or hate) it for a year, then push on to the free Win10 release.

But Windows 7 is still going strong, while Windows XP has been on a steady decline over the last 12 months; half of the latter’s consumer user base peel off for greener (newer) pastures. Many of these users are going to Windows 7, and not 8.1, as the former’s numbers have grown over the last two months (49.51 percent in October to over 50 percent now).

Which version of Windows are you currently rocking? And why? Drop your preferences in the comments.

Source: PCWorld | StatCounter

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