Once month after the official release of its new operating system, Microsoft has announced that it has sold 40 million licenses for Windows 8. Those numbers are very close to the number of Windows 7 licenses sold one month after release.
TechSpot's Jose Vilches reported, "Microsoft has sold 40 million Windows 8 licenses after the operating system's first month of retail availability. Tami Reller, corporate vice president for Windows and Windows Live, revealed the number at a recent investor conference held by Credit Suisse but stopped short of mentioning how many of those came from new PC sales and how many came from end users actually buying upgrades."
InformationWeek's Paul McDougall wrote, "Windows 8 is selling at about the same rate Windows 7 did when that operating system, the best-selling in Microsoft's history, rolled out in late 2010, a Microsoft official said Tuesday. Tami Reller, CFO of Microsoft's Windows division, said the company has sold 40 million Windows 8 licenses since it launched the OS on Oct. 26. "The 40 million is roughly in line with Windows 7," said Reller, speaking at the Credit Suisse Technology Conference, in Scottsdale, Ariz. Microsoft has previously said that it sold 60 million Windows 7 licenses during that operating system's first three months on the market."
Time's Harry McCrackentook a more critical look at the numbers, noting,
Microsoft is saying that Windows 8′s first month has been around twice as strong as Windows Vista’s, and four times as strong as Windows XP’s.
Except it’s not that simple. There are more PC users than there were in 2001, when Windows XP shipped, so you’d expect sales in 2012 to be higher. And Microsoft knocked down Windows 8′s upgrade price to $39.99, far less than it’s traditionally charged for new versions of Windows, which should goose sales. And every version of Windows enters a marketplace in a different state of economic health, which presumably impacts the sales of operating-system software.
Basically, so many factors are at play that unless the number of licenses sold is astonishingly low or high, it’s impossible for those of us outside of Microsoft to know whether the figure tells us anything beyond the fact that millions and millions of people and businesses use Windows and buy Windows computers. Which we already knew.
According to ZDNet's Mary Jo Foley, "Reller shared a few other stats during her remarks including: