Windows 8 sales steady, hit 60 mln since October launch

LAS VEGAS Tue Jan 8, 2013 6:02pm EST

Guests are silhouetted at the launch event of Windows 8 operating system in New York, October 25, 2012. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson

Guests are silhouetted at the launch event of Windows 8 operating system in New York, October 25, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Lucas Jackson

LAS VEGAS (Reuters) - Microsoft Corp has sold 60 million licenses and upgrades for its new Windows 8 operating system in the 10 weeks since its launch, one of the top executives of the company's Windows unit said at the Consumer Electronics Show on Tuesday.

The figure marks a solid but unspectacular start for Microsoft's new flagship product, which has not managed to revive lagging personal computer sales, while new touch-screen Windows devices have not yet captured consumers' imaginations.

Windows 8 sales are growing in line with those of Windows 7, Microsoft's last operating system, launched in 2009, said Tami Reller, chief financial officer of the Windows division, in a presentation to analysts and investors at the annual tech show in Las Vegas.

The latest Windows 8 figure means Microsoft sold around 20 million Windows 8 licenses and upgrades since the end of November, when it announced 40 million sales in the first month on the market.

That puts sales broadly in line with Windows 7, which averaged 19.4 million sales per month in its first nine months on the market, when PC sales were running at a lower level than today.

Reller did not say how many of the Windows 8 sales were bulk orders from PC manufacturers and did not break out the proportion of full license sales and cheaper upgrades from earlier versions of Windows. She also did not say how many Surface tablets - designed to tackle Apple Inc's iPad head on - Microsoft had sold.

Final figures for PC sales in 2012, due in the next week or so from industry tracking groups, are expected to show the first year-on-year decline in a decade as consumers move toward mobile computing on powerful tablets and phones. Microsoft's app-based, touch-friendly Windows 8 system is an attempt to adjust to that shift.

Microsoft shares fell 0.5 percent to $26.55 on the Nasdaq on Tuesday. They are down 6 percent since the launch of Windows 8 on October 26.

(Reporting By Bill Rigby; Editing by Gary Hill and Steve Orlofsky)

We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see http://blogs.reuters.com/fulldisclosure/2010/09/27/toward-a-more-thoughtful-conversation-on-stories/
Comments (6)
Wow, that’s impressive!

Jan 08, 2013 5:40pm EST  --  Report as abuse
George12 wrote:
This is very impressive! 2012 has really been an impressive year for Microsoft from an innovation perspective – windows phone 8, surface, windows 8. Kinect, outlook.com etc. Now an impressive sales number!
Looks like they have made something very disruptive to Apple’s model – Tablet, PC, phone all running one OS. Google – no innovation, but done an impressive job of copying iphone for their android OS

Jan 08, 2013 9:31pm EST  --  Report as abuse
Dissed89 wrote:
Remember 1929? Sales to supply chain not translating into sales to end users are far worse than no sales at all.
MS sold 60M licenses mostly to OEMs
That means around 50M PCs needing to be sold to end user or the supply chain “buffer” economy will collapse, multiplying the damage of the crackdown.
What is the real conversion rate of “sales to OEM” to “Windows 8 end users”?
Netapplications measured this week W8 users are 2.09% of the total, last week it was 2.02%.
In 2 months and 2 weeks, with initial launch boos and Holidays boost, it means W8 is ways below the meager 1%/month adoption rate of Vista – the biggest MS disaster before W8.
Moreover, January’s 0.07/week means a projection of 0.30%/month, that calls for an unfathomable disaster for Microsoft.

Bottom line: high volumes sold to OEMs and very low end user’s adoption are the perfect recipe for the perfect disaster. So far, MS seem to prefer an epic crackdown than slowly falling into oblivion.

Jan 09, 2013 4:33am EST  --  Report as abuse
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.