Windows 8 Off to a Worse Start Than Vista

Paul Lilly

Despite the hype, Windows 8's adoption rate is slower than of Vista's when it debuted five years ago.

If you listen to Microsoft, Windows 8 is not only the greatest operating system ever designed, it's also selling really well. Microsoft in November claimed it sold 40 million Windows 8 licenses in the first month, an impressive figure, even after you factor in all the OEM systems that come pre-loaded with Windows. But is Windows 8 truly off to a fast start? There's evidence to suggest that might not be the case.

According to data compiled by web analytics firm Net Applications , Windows 8's online usage share is a hair under 1.6 percent of all Windows PCs through December 22. When Windows Vista launched in 2007, its online usage share of all Windows PCs was 2.2 percent through the same time period.

In other words, Windows 8 is seeing a slower adoption than Vista, the latter of which stumbled out of the gates to complaints of slow performance and file transfer issues. Looking closer at the data, Windows 8 adoption grew by just 0.4 percentage points from November 22 to December 22, whereas Vista's adoption more than doubled during its second month on the market.

It should be noted that these are just raw numbers; they don't account for the decline in PC sales or any other factors that might skew the results. Still, with so much riding on Windows 8, it's a bad sign that Vista got off to a quicker start.

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