Windows 8 hits 100 million licenses sold

Microsoft reveals new sales milestone for latest operating system; Windows Blue update will "respond to consumer feedback."

Microsoft has now sold over 100 million Windows 8 licenses, the company announced today in an official blog post to its website. This figure includes licenses that ship on new tablets and PCs, as well as upgrades to Windows 8. It is up from 60 million announced in January.

In addition, Windows chief marketing officer and chief financial officer Tami Reller revealed that the number of Windows 8 and Windows RT certified devices has jumped to 2,400.

Also in the blog post, Reller said consumer feedback will shape the future of Windows 8. She revealed Windows Blue, a codename for an update to the OS that will be available later in 2013.

In addition to introducing various performance updates and new options, Windows Blue will make changes based on input Microsoft has received from customers.

"The Windows Blue update is also an opportunity for us to respond to the customer feedback that we've been closely listening to since the launch of Windows 8 and Windows RT," Reller said.

This new update is rumored to mark the return of the Windows Start button and a boot-to-desktop option, which will allow users to bypass the Windows 8 Metro interface altogether.

Windows 8 launched in October. GameSpot sister site CNET found that the operating system "embraces the future wholeheartedly," but said the learning curve was "steep" and in-app navigation can be difficult.

Written By

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and would like to see the Whalers return to Hartford.

Discussion

146 comments
slowram
slowram

If Microsoft does the desktop and start button in Blue as mentioned then it's definitely a new Microsoft.  I don't believe it.

Valen_Ca
Valen_Ca

Maybe next they will get crazy and allow Metro apps to be run in windowed mode natively and allow the app volume to controlled through the standard windows volume control.

smtgfx
smtgfx

ohhh...someone is making money...

stailcookie
stailcookie

Windows is now revamping 8 to put the start button back and disable the mandatory metro interface at startup. Out by the end of the year.


I guess they realized that just because it runs on mobile devices, doesn't mean all devices should run like a mobile device...

commanderxp90
commanderxp90

I don't like Windows 8.  The Windows 7 is better than all. XP stick up together with Wins 7. :o

Thanatos2k
Thanatos2k

No one wants this crap on PCs.  Windows 8 is the new Vista and Windows 7 is the new XP.

TooCoolForYou
TooCoolForYou

Microsoft shouldn't force such drastic changes to their OS like that, especially when people are demanding them to change it back to the way Windows used to be. You can't have a touch screen interface for a desktop when Windows 8 was mainly made for tablets and touch screens, with the afterthought of desktop users in mind. I personally don't like Windows 8, not because I can't adapt to the new changes, but because it makes things harder for me when I use a mouse and keyboard for an OS that was meant for a touch screen. I also dislike the metro interface and I want start back, and for start to open up a small menu, not switch to a brand new screen. That just slows everything down for me, with the constant screen switching. I rather just have Windows 7 (which I'm still using) with the performance speed of Windows 8. The boot times are a lot faster on 8. At least give me that Microsoft.  

Daian
Daian

Well I hate the Metro interface on desktops with a burning passion so if we can bypass it and get the Start button back then I'll use W8.

Restivus
Restivus

Microsoft's "licences sold" numbers are calculated from sales to OEMs, and upgrades, and possibly even Windows RT. The minute a new PC rolls off the manufacturing line with Windows 8 on it, it is counted.

"Licenses sold" numbers are totally different from usage share data. Windows 8 still lags significantly behind other versions.

LtReviews
LtReviews

I guess I should be thankful for Windows 8.

Thanks to Windows 8, Valve has put Steam, Team Fortress 2, Half-Life, Portal, Counter Strike, and Left 4 Dead on Linux, with the rest of their library coming eventually.


Windows 8 was just bad enough to encourage Valve to invest in the more open alternative of Linux

stailcookie
stailcookie

When it's a choice between it, or nothing on a PC...


Seriously though, I don't like that metro is mandatory at launch and that you can't close apps or multitask using it.


Ex: Netflix often crashes on chrome and IE with Win 8 if pause is used, but if you use the dedicated app in Metro, you can't also be doing something else, it auto-pauses if the app isn't the main window and you can't close it, it will stay paused in the app until you shutdown...

shinmew
shinmew

People who have used Windows in the past (and enjoyed it) and don't like Windows 8 has not given it the chance it deserves or has not learned how to fully use it yet. I hated it when I started beta testing it. It took me a year to really start to like it. Now that I've learned Windows 8 to use features like in older versions I've grown to like it like older versions of windows.

I hate to tell these people this, but if you are going to use technology, you have to expect change and adapt to that change otherwise technology just leaves you behind.

bojan_sokol
bojan_sokol

Im happy with my Windows 7 and not planing to change

grokh
grokh

windows 8 sucks. who the hell came up with the idea to make pcs have the same ui as phones. there is a reason phones and tablets have horrible ui . The only reason windows 8 is selling its because when people buy computers right now it comes with windows 8 as standard.
The software itself might be an upgrade to windows 7 but the user interface is a disastrous carwreck

SwimSwimHungry
SwimSwimHungry

I've been using Windows 8 since the 9th of March. Like a lot of people, I was skeptical of Microsoft's design choices and unwilling to accept the changes they made. By now, I'm used to all the new features and pretty satisfied with the additions.

The #1 complaint I hear is that Windows 8 is optimized for touch sensitive devices and doesn't work well on desktops. After using Windows 8 for nearly 2 months, I can tell you that this isn't true. I even use some of the Modern UI (formerly known as Metro) apps on a regular basis. Sure, it might not be perfect, but let's face it. How much time did you spend staring at the old start menu?  Unless you were struggling to find a program, not very long.

My personal opinion of the new Start screen went from "This is a dumb idea, it looks like Launchpad drawn in Paint" to "I guess it's OK, but it isn't an improvement by any means" and finally to "This is actually useful".

Often, in Windows 7 I found myself manually removing launchers from the start menu that I didn't want other people to see, and sometimes my most used app never showed up at all. I love the customization and personalization options Windows 8 offers.

After these 2 long months of using the OS, my only real complaint is the heavy use of low contrast themes in 1st party apps. It makes various forms and panels indistinguishable and even strain my eyes at times. I'm also skeptical about the Windows Store.

Just remember, most of your time using Windows 8 will be 'business as usual'. It has plenty of nice new features. The changes made to the UI aren't nearly as significant as they seem. Besides, this is Microsoft's new direction, so you might as well start getting used to it.

nirzor07
nirzor07

Might have to kip this one completely just like vista

cousinmerl
cousinmerl

it sells because people get it with their new PC's and tablets. be interesting to know how many revert to windows 7 for desktop users.

junglist101
junglist101

That fucking windows blue better be free to Windows 8 users....

tajirinere
tajirinere

So, im using wndows 8 and the start menu is not all that bad. the OS has serious performance issues i.e windows explorer crashes but doesn't completely. so u have to restart the task

there is no adhoc connection for wifi and internet connection sharing is bloody hard to get started. 

in my opinion, that's what y'all should be complaining about not the freaking start screen. its completely forgettable as an issue. e.g my mother uses her pc for solitaire, finding it is a lot easier once installed, so for her, the menu makes sense.

slowram
slowram

@stailcookie More likely someone outside Microsoft is speculating via wishful thinking.

arc_salvo
arc_salvo

@Thanatos2k Actually, Vista's more easily navigable and easier to use.  I would say it's worse than Vista.  I still have Vista on 2 of my older computers.  After I upgraded some of their hardware, Vista worked... reasonably well on them.  Once you tweak that stupid UAC, it's kind of like this rough mix of XP and 7.

8 on the other hand... ugh.  Yes you CAN use it... it's just not an intuitive or enjoyable experience.  It's like Microsoft's Monopoly position in the OS-space has made it lazy and inefficient.  They can make and release total crap, but the OEM's still have to buy it because they refuse to try alternatives.

Well, except Dell and some others and some non-US brands who've embraced Linux.

GuitaristMatt
GuitaristMatt

@Restivus Why would they ship out so many licenses if nobody buys it? That doesn't make sense.

deathstream
deathstream

@LtReviews 

It had nothing to do with the quality of Windows 8.  Tubby Newell saw Windows 8 as competition and threw a tantrum.

LtReviews
LtReviews

@fredyellowone  

Not having to use Metro doesn't mean that mess isn't hogging up system resources.

arc_salvo
arc_salvo

@shinmew Actually, technology doesn't have to change unless people change it, and it can even regress at times if necessary or wanted.

I have given Windows 8 a chance and I still don't like it.  Not because I can't learn to use it (I have) it's just that I don't enjoy it and wonder why the designers thought that implementing a more obscure, less easy to use way of doing things that took more time was an "improvement".  Not all technology changes are better, and sometimes the best way to "adapt" is to revert a bad change back to the better implementation you had before.

That happens in applications and codebases all the time, and not just for stability reasons.  Think of the new UAC they had in Vista and the new and very inefficient visual effects like Aero/Transparency.

Microsoft THEMSELVES reworked and/or removed that stuff in Windows 7 and 8 because they were bad changes that people didn't like that made Vista a huge flop.

aryzner
aryzner

@grokh I was pretty used to the user interface after about 5 minutes, and used to the desktop immediately for obvious reasons. It is not a "disastrous carkwreck."

Mamamf
Mamamf

@SwimSwimHungry I am using windows 8 since the consumer preview on my laptop, and although it's not as bad as people paint it, i still think i would do just fine without the metro interface or at least i'd like it to be improved somehow. Still   there's nothing terrifically wrong with it. Valve painted it like some kind of apocalypse but after trying ubuntu and finding crashing several times, not being capable of recognising my gpu, most games are messed up (with wine) or simply wont run, well, Gabe you were wrong, admit it

SauhlGood
SauhlGood

@SwimSwimHungry im sure you can get used to using even the worst of interfaces, be objective, win8 is there to push their new apple-like store.  It is just not needed, its being crammed down peoples throats.

its meant for a finger, the moment you use a mouse with it, it becomes painfully apparent, I don't care how "used to it" somebody can get to it, that's not the point... if it aint broke don't fix it.

Commander_Snowy
Commander_Snowy

@SwimSwimHungry Exactly my thoughts, I'm tired of some people complaining that Windows 8 is trash if they never tried it or got used to it. I can't go back to Windows 7 after using 8, it'll feel awkward and slow.

WarL0rdzz
WarL0rdzz

@cousinmerl just bought a HP laptop wih win8, went back to win7 on it. works like a charm.


junglist101
junglist101

@tajirinere It's not forgettable when you click on stuff in windows mode and it takes you back to the Metro screen.  Not to mention the apps are shit, even the Netflix app sucks.

Restivus
Restivus

@GuitaristMatt @Restivus They want to make Windows 8 appear as successful or more so than the predecessor. They want to inflate the value of the company. It's a cynical ruse that says a lot about how they value their investors over their customers.

arc_salvo
arc_salvo

@GuitaristMatt @Restivus The OEM's get them in bulk for really cheap and they don't really have much of a choice because Microsoft dictates to them what OS's they can get and for what price.  

So basically, if you're a computer maker/seller Windows 8 is given  to you by Microsoft, and you just have to take it.  It's because Windows is pretty much the only choice for most PC's.

Then the burden of selling the Windows 8 computers falls to the people actually selling the hardware.  The disconnect here is that the PC makers and Sellers have to get Windows 8, but the consumers / end users don't like Window 8, so they don't buy those computers.

I myself, like many others went out of my way to grab up some of the last Windows 7 PC's before they ran out so I didn't have to buy a Windows 8 PC.  Oh man people who were shopping for a PC around the time Windows 8 was launching and beyond know firsthand how fast Windows 7 PC's were selling out.  Even online at places like Amazon and Best Buy.  

One day, the Windows 7 pc you wanted was there.  When you checked tomorrow (or sometimes at night when you got home from work) SOLD OUT.

arc_salvo
arc_salvo

@deathstream @LtReviews Honestly, I do think it had to do with the quality and other issues, like the OS architecture and such.  I think a lot of developers didn't like how Windows 8 was set up under the hood.

As for the Microsoft store in Windows 8, I don't use it and I don't know a lot of people who do.  I don't really see it as serious competition for Steam or even the iOS store and even Google Play.

stailcookie
stailcookie

@fredyellowone @stailcookie True, you can find a 3rd party tool to not use it by default.  I meant to say Microsoft does not natively allow you not to use Metro at startup.

grokh
grokh

@aryzner@grokhthere are billions of users are you saying they all can learn that fast? because according to polls when windows 8 came out the average user had problems understanding how to do simple things.

Also that really doesnt mean much, in the end what matters is that the users like the UI and they dont or we wouldnt be having this conversation. Microsoft should have made windows 8 with 2 different UI choices = problem solved , but they didnt
ergo = car-wreck

arc_salvo
arc_salvo

@Mamamf @SwimSwimHungry About Ubuntu?  I would agree, although not because of hardware issues, but rather, Ubuntu/Canonical's new built in combo spyware/adware system that's built in at the UI / OS Level.  

Sure you can turn it off, but it's on by default and they don't go out of their way to tell you that if you type in a local search for a program in your local program search bar that the results get sent to Canonical and Amazon product ads show up right there in your face.

To be honest, Canonical (The company behind Ubuntu's) getting almost as bad as Microsoft, except they aren't a profitable company that has the kind of market share that Microsoft does so I don't know how they expect to get away with it.

arc_salvo
arc_salvo

@SauhlGood @SwimSwimHungry Actually, I have a touch-screen laptop so I can use Windows 8 with my Finger.  Since most of the apps I use only work well with a keyboard and mouse in the "desktop" mode, I still don't like how the touch-style interface is implemented.

As for the metro interface... I prefer iOS and Android to it.  It's just not as smooth and polished and it feels less efficient.  It works... but I wouldn't say it works well.  It's useable yes, but I hate how the new start menu takes up the whole screen and has HUGE tile icons that show me little information of use when just a popup small window that has reasonably sized icons that didn't obscure my entire view would work much better.

It'd be one thing if the metro UI was optional and you could revert back to the Windows 7 way if you wanted, but Microsoft didn't even do that even though they did it in the past with even Vista and 7.  It shows how little respect they have for their consumers.  Being a monopoly has gone to their heads.

aryzner
aryzner

@SauhlGood @SwimSwimHungry You can either click icons in Windows 7 or you can click icons in Windows 8. I can accept that it's "meant for a finger" but it works perfectly well with a mouse as well. There is absolutely no downside to using Windows 8 with a mouse. I speak from experience as someone who's been using W8 since release.

grokh
grokh

@Commander_Snowy @SwimSwimHungry  if you get used to it then ofc its going to be acceptable. The point with windows 8 being horrible is that people need to not only re-learn how an OS works, but also it doesnt change it for the better.

performance wise ofc its better.  but if people dont like how it works due to it not being practical, except for microsoft to have 1 OS size fits all, then they wont accept the change.

Change is not always accepted lightly specially when they tried changing and fixing something that everyone was used to and liked it.

But their biggest mistake is in fact not giving people the option to have multiple types of UI. that way people who like windows 8 lame ui could stick with it and others who did not like it could change to look like windows 7.

that way everyone would be happy. But they didnt do that and the result is alienation because most people dont like being forced fed something.

arc_salvo
arc_salvo

@fredyellowone @LtReviews According to benchmarks, it's actually not faster, it's the same as Windows 7.  Except you have to put up with its stupid quirks which makes actually doing things slower and less enjoyable, regardless of the system response speed.

Kind of reminds me a little of the Gnome 3 / 2 disconnect in Linux, not that anyone even knows what that is.

arc_salvo
arc_salvo

@grokh @aryzner Pretty much what you said.  If the old Windows 7 options were still there (like the classic options were there in XP and Vista) there would have been no problems.

I have a Windows 8 Laptop with a touchscreen and yes I can use it, it's not impossible, and it's not "hard" per se.  It's just not efficient or enjoyable and I definitely did not find it as easy to learn and understand as previous version which I learned with hands-on experimentation as opposed to reading manuals or reading/watching online tutorials.

As for Windows 8... it's not so easy to learn the first time around just by experimentation.  Who decided to put essential menus and functions completely offscreen anyhow?  Do they really expect computer novices to slide their mouse off-screen at certain places to get menus to show up?

What about people who click the start button instead of pressing the start key on the keyboard?  

Mamamf
Mamamf

@arc_salvo @Mamamf @SwimSwimHungry My experience was with a 2/3 year old alienware mx15 laptop and the alternative drivers for the gpu recognise it as a much weaker gpu than it is, computer sometimes crashes, many times because of browser and browser's plugins, etc. Since i don't want to waste time trying to fix all these problems i'll be installing Windows 8 again or if someone gets me for free i'll install Windows 7 again