Microsoft has spent a fortune to make Windows 8 more appealing to those running previous Windows versions, and although at first uptake of the modern operating system was below expectations, it appears that more users are giving it a try these days.
Figures provided by market researcher StatCounter for the month of August 2014 show that Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 have a combined market share that exceeds Windows XP’s, indicating that at least in the past 28 days, the modern operating system was powering more computers than its ancient predecessor.
Specifically, Windows XP is currently installed on 14.31 percent of the computers worldwide, while Windows 8 has a share of 7.35 percent. Windows 8.1 also comes close with 8.2 percent, thus leading to a combined market share of Microsoft’s modern operating system of 15.55 percent, so Windows XP is now being used by less people than those who installed Windows 8.
This is obviously exciting news for Microsoft, especially because the company is hoping to see more users giving up Windows XP and, at the same time, moving to the new Windows 8.
This is actually one of the reasons the company says on every single occasion pretty much the same thing, warning users that sticking to Windows XP is a very risky decision without any other security patches and updates being released after end of support.
Windows XP reached end of support on April 8, so since then, computers still running it aren’t receiving new updates from Microsoft.
“While it's true that you can keep using your PC with Windows XP after support ends, we don’t recommend it. For starters, it’ll become five times more vulnerable to security risks and viruses, which means you could get hacked and have your personal information stolen,” the company says.
“Also, companies that make devices like digital cameras, Internet-ready TVs, and printers won’t provide drivers that work with Windows XP, so if you get new devices, they won’t work with your current PC. And over time, the security and performance of your PC will just continue to degrade so things will only get worse.”
One of the things that could spur the adoption of new software might be related to recent rumors about Windows 9, as some people close to the development process said that Microsoft could offer the next operating system free of charge to those running Windows 8. Of course, this rumor hasn’t yet been confirmed, so nobody can tell for sure whether Windows 9 will be free or not.