This wasn’t supposed to happen. After Microsoft pulled the plug on its popular Windows XP operating system this past April, use of the decade-old OS was supposed to sharply decline and quickly become extinct. Only a few months out from the XP-end-of-life event and the opposite has proven to be true.
According to a recent report by Net Application on June’s operating system usage numbers, Windows XP usage actually grew from 25.27 percent to 25.31 percent. It’s such a tiny growth that, if it wasn’t for the fact that XP use is supposed to be rapidly decreasing, then it wouldn’t be newsworthy. However, this news is a big deal because a computer running Windows XP doesn’t have security support from Microsoft, which means that it’s pretty much at the mercy of hackers. The longer XP is used makes a PC more vulnerable over time.
How can this be? We can speculate all day about why this is. It could stem from the stubbornness of people to change and do the right thing, even when they’re faced with the facts. Or, perhaps Microsoft overestimated just how much people love Windows XP. For some people, saying goodbye to their beloved 12-year old operating system may feel like putting down a sick dog that’s been a loyal pet for a decade–it’s just too hard to let go of all the good memories. Or, it may just be that some people don’t have it in their budgets. Upgrading from XP requires time and expense, and if XP doesn’t seem broken, why dedicate the resources to fix it?
It’s difficult to nail down one specific reason why Windows XP usage grew in June, but there’s one statistic about Windows 8 that shines light on this mystery. According to the same Net Application study, June 2014 usage of Windows 8 and 8.1 declined, dropping from 12.64 to 12.54 percent. The entire month of June was like opposite day over at Microsoft.
These two statistics show that Microsoft has themselves a bonafide crisis on their hands. At the beginning of the year, Microsoft ran an entire marketing campaign around upgrading the bug-filled Windows XP to the new-and-improved Windows 8. The very fact that Windows XP usage is still doubled that of Windows 8 and 8.1 shows how well that went.
For Microsoft, there was a bright side to the report and that was in regards to Windows 7. Usage of Windows 7 in June 2014 grew from 50.06 percent to 50.55 percent. This may sound like good news for Microsoft, but it’s not the kind of good news Microsoft is looking for. Microsoft has gone all in with Windows 8.1 and they’re trying to get everybody and their mother to use it. Essentially, it’s like Microsoft is hiding Windows 7 in the back room and customers are in the showroom, kicking the tires of Windows 8.1 and saying to Microsoft, “This looks alright I guess. Hey, whatcha got in that back room?”
The one big thing we can takeaway from this study is that it’s vital to the security and productivity of your business to stop using Windows XP. Whether your company chooses to upgrade to Windows 8.1, Windows 7, or heck, even Vista or Linux, you need to stop using Windows XP, like, yesterday.
Tektonic can walk your business through the Windows XP upgrading process. Give us a call at (416) 256-9928 to find out how easy it is to say goodbye to XP, and hello to a more efficient operating system!