Windows 8 Sells 40 Million Licenses in First Month

by Jordan Richardson on November 28, 2012

The numbers are in for the first month of the Windows 8 operating system and things are looking not too shabby for the Microsoft venture despite assertions stating otherwise. According to reports, some 40 million licenses were sold in the first month, meaning that it’s outpacing Windows 7 in terms of upgrades.

Of course, Windows 7 moved 60 million copies in its first 10 weeks. An estimated 40 million licenses of that were sold in the first month, too, so the numbers certainly appear to be quite comparable if not exactly the same. It’ll depend on how Windows 8 continues to pace itself.

A lot of the discussion has centred on the issue of cost. The Windows 8 upgrades are much cheaper than the transition to Windows 7. Microsoft is currently selling upgrades to 8 in the range of $39.99, depending on market locale, and that could mean that some users are purchasing the upgrade but not installing it yet.

Many are presumably just fine with how Windows 7 has been doing and have no intentions of moving on to Windows 8, but they’ve taken the relatively affordable Windows 8 as a sort of failsafe in case things start to roll in the direction of the newer operating system.

Offering Windows 8 at such an inexpensive price could very well harm Microsoft’s bottom line, at least when it comes to overall revenue, and it certainly won’t compete on grounds of cash alone with the likes of Apple. Some have even taken to calling Windows users “cheapskates,” based in part at least on the idea that so many apps in the Windows 8 Store are free. Nothing like a little dumb rivalry.

This could turn out well for Microsoft in the end, but it could also spell disaster in a land where revenue is king. The company may be able to convert a good number of people to its Windows 8 operating system after wearing them down for a while, but if many potential users are buying in when the prices are low Microsoft might have trouble gathering more cash.

In contrast, Apple sold 40 million iPads in all of 2011. OS X has about 66 million users in total. From this, it’s fair to conclude that reports of the death of the PC market have been greatly exaggerated – at least for now.

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