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Windows in Charge: A Few Numbers

Microsoft yesterday announced some more details about the coming Windows Store for Windows 8. You can read my news article, It's Official: Windows 8 Beta, Windows Store to Debut in Late February, for the details. But I'm particularly taken by some of the numbers Microsoft provided at the event and in an associated blog post.

1.25 billion. The current number of active Windows users worldwide.

500 million. The number of Windows 7 licenses sold since October 2009.

400 million. The number of x86 PCs that will be sold in the next 12 months.

247 million. The number of iOS devices (iPhone, iPod touch, iPad) sold since Windows 7 debuted in October 2009.

152 million. The number of Android devices (smart phones, tablets) sold since Windows 7 debuted in October 2009.

30 million. The number of Macs sold since Windows 7 debuted in October 2009.

People often confuse market share (units sold in a given time period, usually yearly or monthly) and usage share, which is the number of people actually using a product at any point in time, usually "right now." So it's easy to compute the market share of the Mac, say, compared to the broader PC industry, because these figures are released regularly and easily configured. So I do that every quarter. But computing usage share, which many believe to be more relevant than market share, is much harder.

At this moment in time, however, it's pretty easy to get a big picture view of what people are really using out there. Microsoft says that there are 1.25 billion people using Windows. And in October, Apple was kind enough to reveal that there are now 60 million people using the Mac. So the Mac's usage share--and remember, this is the more relevant figure, as so many insist--is 4.8 percent.

So there you go.

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