The operating system, which was discontinued a year ago, is still popular even without updates. More than Microsoft could wish for.
Windows 7 continues to see significant adoption, even though it’s becoming more insecure for consumers every day. According to Statcounter, 18 percent of all Windows desktops and laptops used Windows 7 in December. In NetApplication, which also takes other operating systems such as MacOS and Linux into account in its comparison, Windows 7 even comes in at 20 percent.
Microsoft finally discontinued Windows 7 almost exactly a year ago, which was practical for the operating system that had been very popular until then missed the coup de grace because the end user no longer gets any updates. This also applies to security updates, as Microsoft discontinued support on January 14, 2020.
With Windows 10, Microsoft finally launched an updated version of the operating system in the summer of 2015, albeit – at least at the beginning – not everyone liked it. That was different with Windows 7. When this operating system was released in 2009, it already proved to be stable in its first version and was correspondingly popular.
This does not seem to have changed for a good proportion of users. The proportion of Windows 7 users is shrinking only slowly. A look at the market shares of the Windows versions of the statistics service StatCounter shows that Windows 7 has even increased by more than one percentage point in the last two months. At the beginning of 2020, however, the market share was still almost 25 percent, so some users have now switched to Windows 10 or alternative operating systems. Netmarketshare measured around 20 percent for Windows 7 in December, after around 26 percent in January.
Statcounter also publishes data for individual regions and countries. In Germany and Austria, Windows 7 can now only be found on around eight percent of Windows computers. 86-87 percent are using Windows 10. The rest are still using Windows 8(.1), Vista or XP.
ChromeOS is thriving in the US
Across all operating systems, 78 percent of the German desktops and laptops active on the Internet run a Windows version. According to Statcounter, almost 20 percent use MacOS X, and another 2.2 percent use Linux. In Austria, Windows is two percentage points more widespread. The situation is similar worldwide, with Windows at 77 percent far ahead of MacOSX at 17 percent.
The processors in the USA work differently. Microsoft now has to be content with a 61 percent market share on desktops and laptops. This is not only due to the 31 percent for MacOS X, but also the 5.5 percent that Google’s ChromeOS convinced.
There are updates for Windows 7, but they cost
Although end users will no longer receive updates for Windows 7, Microsoft is offering companies a support extension for Windows 7 until 2023. This “Extended Security Updates Program” (ESU) is possible for Windows 7 Professional, Enterprise and Ultimate. Microsoft no longer supports Windows 7 Home, even for a lot of money.
The prices for the ESU program have now doubled, as you can find out from the provider Software-Express, for example. With such an ESU license, Windows 7 users can still receive updates until January 2023 – according to the current status. However, this is primarily of interest to large customers and their volume licenses, less so for small and medium-sized businesses.