Microsoft: Windows 8 usage over twice that of Windows 7 beta

The Windows 8 Consumer Preview was released just under two months ago by Microsoft on February 29th, but a new claim by the company says the number of people using the preview version of the OS is already past that of the Windows 7 beta release at the same time period for both versions. In a post on the official Windows 8 Twitter page, Microsoft stated:

Windows 8 consumer preview usage more than twice Windows 7 beta at the same point in time. Millions of people using everyday. #thankyou

Naturally, the post doesn't give any more specifics about exactly how many people are using Windows 8, nor how many downloads Microsoft has recorded for the Consumer Preview version since the February 29th launch. Microsoft did say that the Windows 8 Consumer Preview was downloaded one million times in the first day of its release.

If Microsoft's stats are indeed correct, that would mean that the controversy over Windows 8's Metro interface isn't stopping people from trying it out. The next big hurdle will be if more people will try out the release candidate version of Windows 8. That build, which is rumored to be called the "Release Preview", is expected to be launched this summer, and perhaps as early as the end of May.

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@PGHammer
Personaly it all boils down to how much work i have to do to customize / streamline my OS on a fresh install so i can have the performance and features i want.
Every version of windows that comes out there is more and more "crap" i have to kill..
I don't think there is any aspect of the windows UI i don't change / hack.
My own re creation of the XP quick launch on win7 is one of my most used and usefull
hacks, i use a hybrid of Explorer Task Bar Pinnings / start menu and a custom quick launch..

I spend probably 50% of my PC time doing tasks to make my computer run faster or more functional and if MS has a higher level of concern for performance i would be happier.. sadly i think the concept takes a back seat to thinking up what YOUR next opinion will be, and if you happen to like what Microsoft TOLD YOU to like then I'm happy for you, to each their own..

I think Norton (cough cough) Microsoft will learn the whole bloat issue
I refuse to use uTorrent v3.xx for the same reasons
Garbage programming from idiots, pumping the same old excuses
Buy a better computer so you can do what you used to do plus some random dumb crap tacked on..
The only major functionality i use that is different from XP to Win 7 is the theme UI
aside from that all i see is massive bloat and an ever increasing catering and pandering to grandma and kids that will love and use what ever MS decides to pump out next..

Windows 8 RTM will require how much work on a fresh install to be similar to 7 ?
And no i'm not counting the obligatory 3rd party app's bundled with OEM computers

The outlook for PC's look dim unless core concepts change
Performance and resource utilization balanced and weighed against features
HAS to be the first priority and if MS is already doing this then they are doing it badly.
Never mind the fact that Metro is BUTT UGLY.. thats a whole other topic

Dumb..

"If Microsoft's stats are indeed correct, that would mean that the controversy over Windows 8's Metro interface isn't stopping people from trying it out."

Seriously ? that's how you CHOOSE to view that ?
Wouldn't the opposite be just as valid ?
People are trying it more because of the drama ???

You wanna compare ?
Did they (MS) dramaticly change the OS UI from Vista -> Win 7
like they are doing to Win 7 -> Win 8
Nope.

Dumb comparison and slanted bias view (as expected around here)
..par for the course at neowin (MS / Fanboy central)
Show me a news article here where the author blatantly has a critical view on MS
AND all the majority users agree

Won't touch the beta / alpha and this is the first one yet for me
Why ?
I own a desktop computer not a glorified iPhone
thanks but no thanks, i'll be keeping my money in my pocket..

I am Not PCyr said,
Dumb..

"If Microsoft's stats are indeed correct, that would mean that the controversy over Windows 8's Metro interface isn't stopping people from trying it out."

Seriously ? that's how you CHOOSE to view that ?
Wouldn't the opposite be just as valid ?
People are trying it more because of the drama ???

You wanna compare ?
Did they (MS) dramaticly change the OS UI from Vista -> Win 7
like they are doing to Win 7 -> Win 8
Nope.

Dumb comparison and slanted bias view (as expected around here)
..par for the course at neowin (MS / Fanboy central)
Show me a news article here where the author blatantly has a critical view on MS
AND all the majority users agree

Won't touch the beta / alpha and this is the first one yet for me
Why ?
I own a desktop computer not a glorified iPhone
thanks but no thanks, i'll be keeping my money in my pocket..

Therefore- you are demonstrating your own bias.

I'd tried the two leaks before the Developer Preview (which were pretty much like Windows 7 - UI and all), then the Developer Preview (the last major pre-beta milestone) and now run the Consumer Preview as sole OS.

In the case of the Developer Preview, I downloaded it *because* of the UI - it was indeed radically different from that of Windows 7 and earlier. I was concerned with two major issues

1. How would traditional applications and games deal with the wildly-different UI.
2. How usable is Windows 8 - again, due to the wildly-different UI.

The application concern turns out to be completely overblown - traditional applications could care less about the UI difference as they Just Plain Work. (The same applies to games - they pretty much also Just Plain Work.) Other than those applications and utilities mooted by new/improved features in the operating system itself, I've migrated the entirety of my applications and games from Windows 7 to the Consumer Preview - which I couldn't have done if application-compatibility were an issue. (Even the Consumer/Developer Preview's critics are surprised over the application-compatibility - it's something that Microsoft has traditionally had some quirks with.).

The reason for pretty much ALL the criticism - and again, the detractors are far from shy about it - is the UI; specifically, the lack of a Start menu. In short, it's not the hardware compatibility or the application compatibility that has the critics screaming.

I've said it before, and apparently I have to repeat myself; when it comes to change, we want it for everyone ELSE - not ourselves. When it comes to us, we're as conservative as Rick Santorum.

What I like...
-Marketplace
-The speed
-The few improvements made to the desktop UI

What I don't like...
-The changes to desktop UI are not very significant
-I'm annoyed by the fact that you open a picture on the desktop and it takes you to a boring full screen Metro APP, the good thing is that the OS asks you if you one to open the image with a desktop application instead the first time.
-The mix between the Desktop and Metro is not very polished, I feel there's something missing or incomplete.
-The Metro APPS are very basic, the good thing is that all of them are upgradeable through the Marketplace, so I'm sure better versions will come in the future

Have a hard time believing that. Or maybe more people are checking it out to see if it's as bad as they are hearing it is. Ive got it on one laptop. have hardly touched it. it's a serious pain.. It's a tablet OS. Not meant for anything else.

Agreed. Consumers are going to HATE this on the desktop. The transition/upgrade is not ready for primetime and should have been rolled out as a desktop option for Windows 8. Then once all the usability mistakes and bugs were dealt with, it could be become a defacto setting in Windows 9 or 10.

This is the first time that Microsoft has not acted cautiously when it comes to legacy users, programs, etc. in a Windows OS upgrade...and it's going to cost them market share to Apple on the desktop.

excalpius said,
Agreed. Consumers are going to HATE this on the desktop. The transition/upgrade is not ready for primetime and should have been rolled out as a desktop option for Windows 8. Then once all the usability mistakes and bugs were dealt with, it could be become a defacto setting in Windows 9 or 10.

This is the first time that Microsoft has not acted cautiously when it comes to legacy users, programs, etc. in a Windows OS upgrade...and it's going to cost them market share to Apple on the desktop.

Because if Microsoft waits on users (especially enterprise users) - XP would STILL be on the shelf. You are basically asking Microsoft to be willingly held hostage by their most conservative users - enterprise users. Wasn't the five year lag between XP and Vista (or seven years between XP and 7) proof enough that hyper-conservatism is bad (if not awful) for Microsoft in particular, if not computing in general?

Also, why would it cost them marketshare to Apple? If anything, the changeover to Apple would be worse than upgrading to Windows 8 - because you'd STILL have to replace all the hardware (and a lot more thoroughly than merely upgrading to Windows 8). If anything, they will do what they did when confronted with Vista - stay put (likely with Windows 7, as opposed to XP). Also, there is NO problem with compatibility with *legacy/traditional* applications with Windows 8, as there was with either Vista or 7 when those operating systems went RTM - unlike 7 (let alone Vista), despite a much bigger change in UI, traditional applications largely could care less. Users care - however, the applications themselves run just fine. (I run the Consumer Preview in x64 as sole OS - the only Windows 7 is in VMs. I run mostly traditional applications and games - not just all the applications and games I ran in 7 x64, either, but new ones that I can now run due to hardware improvements (largely due to more RAM and a quad-core CPU) compared to when I moved to 7 x64 (Celeron DC with 2 GB when I upgraded to 7 x64 from Vista x64 to Q6600 and 4 GB today) . In fact, other than software made moot by features in Windows 8 CP itself, I've migrated my entire application and game inventory to Windows 8 CP - lock, stock, and barrel. I couldn't do that if there were application-compatibility issues.)

Don't confuse application-compatibility with user-compatibility; if anything, Vista should have cured techies of that.

Consumer? Most people just use what's on their machine or they'll demand 7 like they demanded XP over Vista. I wouldn't necessarily call that a "huge success".
Businesses? A lot are finally moving to 7 and they won't turn around so soon and upgrade to 8. Again, I wouldn't call that a "huge success".

mrp04 said,
All these metro haters are going to be severely disappointed when Windows 8 is a huge success.

I wont be disappointed but I will be certainly surprised.

Actually, I predict that Apple's desktop sales are going to go through the roof, since they'll be the only company offering an experience that looks and behaves like Windows traditionally has.

By not thinking the Windows 8 on the desktop transition through clearly, Microsoft has sacrificed their core competency and market share monopoly in desktop, professional, business, and home users in an effort to go after the consumer tablet and phone markets.

They could have kept their core-competency market share intact (while going after touch devices with Metro) if they'd have just stepped off the "Metro for all" bandwagon internally a year ago...when all the really smart people who work with Microsoft told them what a huge mistake this was.

excalpius said,
Actually, I predict that Apple's desktop sales are going to go through the roof, since they'll be the only company offering an experience that looks and behaves like Windows traditionally has.

By not thinking the Windows 8 on the desktop transition through clearly, Microsoft has sacrificed their core competency and market share monopoly in desktop, professional, business, and home users in an effort to go after the consumer tablet and phone markets.

They could have kept their core-competency market share intact (while going after touch devices with Metro) if they'd have just stepped off the "Metro for all" bandwagon internally a year ago...when all the really smart people who work with Microsoft told them what a huge mistake this was.

Very well said.
In fact Microsoft violated Jeff Bezos' Maxim, #5, as presented in April 23 issue of Forbes Magazine, page 79. I quote "Determine what your customers need, and work backwards." Obviously, businesses and enterprises, along with serious PC users, were not considered to be "customers."

If a strict "body count," it is somewhat meaningless--as one is comparing apples (tablets/smartphones) with oranges (laptops/desktops). Much more meaningful would be a count by business/serious PC users between Windows-7 and Windows-8.

TsarNikky said,
Much more meaningful would be a count by business/serious PC users between Windows-7 and Windows-8.
I'd be amazed if any business was using Windows 8 right now. Heck, I'd be amazed if many businesses start using it when it's fully released, but that's another story. As for the serious PC users, how is one supposed to differentiate between a serious PC user and a casual one at this stage?

TsarNikky said,
If a strict "body count," it is somewhat meaningless--as one is comparing apples (tablets/smartphones) with oranges (laptops/desktops). Much more meaningful would be a count by business/serious PC users between Windows-7 and Windows-8.

Unless I'm missing something, the Win8 version (WIN8 RT) isn't and won't be available to download publicly. To get Win8 on a tablet, you have to buy the tablet with it on it.

But then again for a company to include tablets that they have had manufacturers release to vendors and whatnot, which included an installation of Win8 on it , and then include those numbers in this count wouldn't exactly be shocking.

.Neo said,
Did Windows 7 have a open public beta? If not, I don't find these figures shocking.

Some quick searching shows that there was an open beta limited to 2.5 million downloads that was to be closed on Jan 25th. However MS extended the date and eliminated the download limit. However sometime within the first 10 days of February roundabouts the open beta was closed.

So it does look to be a bit of an apples and oranges kind of thing.

Edited by Condere, Apr 22 2012, 2:27pm :

.Neo said,
Did Windows 7 have a open public beta? If not, I don't find these figures shocking.

Yes there was, actually the beta got leaked a month before the public release

I have it running as my main OS on my laptop at home. It ran pretty good the last couple of weeks with no issue's that I could find to not leave it on there. I had a TKR and I used my laptop at home to VPN into my office every day and work and it ran no problem like this for 8 hours a day with no hickups or other issue's that stood out. Speed was fine, getting used to the Start menu is something different. It seems to me that there are a few extra mouse clicks at times but I can live with that as long as the speed is there. Its not perfect right now but its completely usable.

I have it running on two desktops and a laptop. None of them have touch interfaces mind you. Overall it's very good. It still has the shortcomings one expects with beta/unfinished product but I will upgrade as I anticipate it should only get better. I'm a fanboy but I'll admit it isn't flawless.... YET!

Unfortunately, Windows 8 will not change before RTM. Other than bug fixes and minor cosmetic updates to icons, etc., what you currently see is what you will get.

Got the consumer preview installed as my main OS now, past week or so. I think it's a tremendous improvement over Windows 7 even for desktop. Everything is snappier, quicker to get around, easier. Great improvements with libraries and the task manager and that I can right click in the bottom left to get system links such as device manager.

I really find the new start screen quicker to launch apps too. It's a pain that sleep/shut down isn't quicker to get to though. I hope the're more improvements to usability by release as it does need more work there.

I gave the Windows 8 CP a chance for around 2 solid months on my media centre PC. A lot of family members and friends use this one with it being in my living room and no one liked it. I like some things about Windows 8, I even like Metro but I think they still need to put a lot of work into it. I went back to windows 7 yesterday.

Hah same here, reinstalled Windows 7 (clean) on Thursday. I will wait until Mozilla have a decent fix for Firefox on Windows 8 too, I might give the Release Preview another go.

Mark said,
I gave the Windows 8 CP a chance for around 2 solid months on my media centre PC. A lot of family members and friends use this one with it being in my living room and no one liked it. I like some things about Windows 8, I even like Metro but I think they still need to put a lot of work into it. I went back to windows 7 yesterday.

Same experience I am having with my clients. For the record I have 6 laptops with the beta on it, as well a thumb-drive TOGO installation as well.

Previewed it with 2 new clients yesterday, and neither one was impressed... or happy about having to learn Win8.

I would say its coz downloading Win8 previews is easier , just go to link and download , earlier u had to login and then download and crap

I imagine it goes like this: Win7 was good, so people are eager to try the next version. Hence the higher use rates. Disappointments will be had.

LaXu said,
I imagine it goes like this: Win7 was good, so people are eager to try the next version. Hence the higher use rates. Disappointments will be had.

Indeed. This is a meaningless (and misleading) statistic but I appreciate their need to spin this.

It won't keep desktop users from rebelling in droves when Metro is crammed down their throats at the end of the year though.

I think the OS is the best windows iteration yet. I cant wait to it to reach RTM.
To answer to some comments....

"i didn´t like metro idea at first too. Now i really dont care. Win8 its the best win ever... And it will be a flop... Like 7... wink wink.
Everybody + your grand grand mother will be using it.
hehehe."

I have it running on my home box in a VM. Give users the OPTION of NOT using the metro theme, and I might switch...otherwise, Win7 runs just fine.

KomaWeiss said,
I just wish it had the option to opt out of the Metro start menu.

Just don't use it? I can go hours without ever going to the start screen. Shortcuts are friends.

KomaWeiss said,
I just wish it had the option to opt out of the Metro start menu.

Why? It's not as if Windows 8 is a world of difference compared to Windows 7 if you disable Metro...

I have it running natively on one machine (dual boot) and its installed in two VM instances on this machine. I wanted to upgrade my Windows 7 Ultimate install, but it just won't install at all, hoping the RC will change that since I just want to start standardizing on it instead of dual booting .

Mr. Dee said,
I have it running natively on one machine (dual boot) and its installed in two VM instances on this machine. I wanted to upgrade my Windows 7 Ultimate install, but it just won't install at all, hoping the RC will change that since I just want to start standardizing on it instead of dual booting .


i did an upgrade install just fine using the Web installer this upgrade is from windows 7 64bit ultimate

Somehow this is good attention for the OS, it'll have its haters and fanatics but if MS can spin this to their advantage it could be very successful.