With Windows 8 now at the 100m licence milestone and Windows Blue on the horizon, Microsoft executive Tami Reller talks numbers for the six-month-old OS but remains tight-lipped on its successor.
Windows 8 had sold 60m licences by the start of this year, just over two months after its release in late October last year. Now, after a half-year on the market, the operating system has reached 100m licences, counting both new devices sold and upgrades, and there are 2,400 certified Windows 8 and Windows RT devices available on the market.
These figures were revealed by Tami Reller, chief marketing officer and chief financial officer of Microsoft’s Windows division, in a Q&A posted to the Windows blog. Reller also revealed that the number of apps in the Windows Store has increased six-fold since its launch alongside Windows 8, and downloads have surpassed 250m in its first six months.
Other figures quoted by Reller include more than 700m active Microsoft accounts, more than 250m SkyDrive users, and 400m active Outlook.com accounts. This last achievement was no doubt assisted by the changeover for all Hotmail users, which has already been completed ahead of schedule.
Windows’ mobile evolution
When asked how she feels about the oft-reported demise of the PC, Reller remained optimistic about its mobile potential.
“The PC is very much alive and increasingly mobile,” she said. “The PC is also part of a much broader device market of tablets and PCs. Windows 8 was built to fully participate in this broader and increasingly mobile device market. The PC part of the market is rapidly evolving to include new convertible devices and amazing new touch laptops, and all-in-ones.”
Reller is hopeful for a strong back-to-school season later this year, as Windows 8 devices – by then approaching a year on the market – become more affordable.
On Windows Blue, the codename for Microsoft’s next OS iteration, Reller leaves us with expectations for improved battery life and performance, as well as compatibility with various form factors. While she assures us that the new OS will address issues users have had with Windows 8, she shied away from giving any specific details on the upcoming platform.