Windows 7 is finally dying

At long last, Windows 7 users are beginning to drop the operating system in favour of newer versions.

This trend is reflected in the latest data from NetMarketShare, which shows that the adoption of Windows 10 continues to increase as more Windows 7 users heed Microsoft’s warning regarding the operating system’s impending loss of support.

Windows 10 first overtook Windows 7 in terms of market share in December 2018, despite its release over three years earlier in June 2015.

This shows the extremely slow uptake of the software by Windows users, which is especially dismal compared to the rapid adoption of new software versions by Mac and iOS users.

Windows 7 has now finally started to lose larger chunks of market share, however, making way for the mass adoption of Windows 10.

Market share

Windows 7 adoption is at its lowest point ever recorded on NetMarketShare and the ageing operating system finally looks to be going the way of Windows 8.1 and XP.

A slight resurgence in Windows 7 adoption near the end of the year pointed towards the OS sticking out the competition for a bit longer, but the adoption has since dropped off steeply to a point where recovery is unlikely.

Older Windows operating systems such as Windows 8.1 and XP remain at around 4% and 2% market share respectively.

The market share of the four most popular Windows operating systems over the last six months is shown in the table below.

Windows 7 Home Premium

Operating System Oct 2018 Nov 2018 Dec 2018 Jan 2019 Feb 2019 Mar 2019
Windows 10 38.28% 38.14% 39.22% 40.90% 40.30% 43.62%
Windows 7 39.35% 38.89% 36.90% 37.19% 38.41% 36.52%
Windows 8.1 4.90% 4.59% 4.45% 4.34% 4.37% 4.13%
Windows XP 3.60% 4.23% 4.54% 2.76% 3.34% 2.29%

End of life

While history shows that users are slow to give up on older Windows operating systems, Microsoft has announced that it will discontinue extended support for Windows 7 in January 2020.

This means that users who insist on remaining with the shelved operating system will no longer receive critical security and quality-of-life updates.

Mainstream support for the original version of Windows 7 ended on 9 April 2013, while mainstream support for Windows 7 Service Pack 1 ended on 13 January 2015.

It will take a long time before the operating system fades into obscurity, though.

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Windows 7 is finally dying