Report: Windows 10 Uptake Losing Momentum

John Lister's picture

Windows 10 is picking up new users at an increasingly slower pace according to newly-published figures. An international breakdown suggests the decision for Microsoft to give Windows 10 away free of charge may not have had as much impact as expected.

The main set of new figures covers November 2015 and is from NetMarketShare. As with several other companies, it provides visitor analysis for a large number of websites (around 40,000) and regularly collates the data from these sites.

Windows 10 Still Behind XP, 7, and 8

During November 2015, Windows 10 was used by around nine percent of visitors to the monitored sites, up from eight percent last month. That puts it behind Windows 7 at 56.11 percent, Windows 8/8.1 at a combined 14.03 percent, and XP at 10.59 percent. Windows Vista's figures were virtually non-existent.

Both these and similar figures from other companies suggest the rate of adoption of Windows 10 is slowing significantly. To some extent the slowed pace was inevitable, with many users either deciding to get the update straight away, or deciding to put it off as long as possible in hopes of bugs being ironed out. (Source:

In any case, Microsoft may be disappointed by the slowdown given November marked the first major update to Windows 10 to be sent out to general users, rather than users on test panels. In particular, Micorsoft may have hoped that some business users were waiting for the first update before upgrading.

Windows 10 More Popular In US

Meanwhile, US government figures may give some insight into the international picture, albeit it with a significant margin of error.

The Digital Analytics Program (DAP) gathers together data from around 4,000 US government websites. By the nature of the sites, the vast majority (around 86 percent) of visitors are from the US.

The DAP reports that in October, 10.9 percent of visitors were running Windows 10. As noted, that compares to an estimate of eight percent of visitors to sites around the world. (Source:

While figures these small aren't necessarily conclusive, it does appear that Windows 10 may be more popular among US users than across the world as a whole. With previous new editions of Windows, that would be largely expected because of the cost of upgrading and the need to have relatively high-spec computers.

That's much less of an issue with Windows 10, so if the upgrade being free was making a big difference, it might be expected that the take-up rate would vary little from country to country.

What's Your Opinion?

Do you expect to see a significant increase in upgrades to Windows 10 in the future? Do you feel users are still waiting to be convinced the new system is worth getting? Do you think that the end of the free upgrade program next year spark a last-minute rush?

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Dennis Faas's picture

I definitely see a final 'rush' for Windows 10 before the July 29, 2016 deadline, as it will be widely reported in the media just before that date. Besides that, there are many users that are still waiting on the bugs to be ironed out and the deadline will be a reminder that a more polished version is available.

As it stands now, there are a lot of incompatibility problems, especially with older video cards. I don't know what AMD's plans are for older-generation video cards (Radeon 4250, for example), but so far it seems there is zero support.

alan.cameron_4852's picture

Quote: During November 2015, Windows 10 was used by around nine percent of visitors to the monitored sites, up from eight percent last year.

This is rubbish there was never 8 percent of users using Windows 10 last year.

I doubt if it was more than 0%.

durbandon's picture

good thinking

clay_3833's picture

Savvy users may be holding off to make the switch until the bugs are worked out. New versions of Windows are often problematic and Win 10 is no exception. I have it on a lesser used machine to play with, but rolled back to Win 7 on my workhorse laptop (with an i7 processor with tons of memory and storage) because Win 10 was a disaster--screwed up my networking, had to disable some Microsoft reporting back programs because they caused the screen to periodically flash off and back on, etc. The last straw was an upgrade the killed the start menu, making it unusable. By next Spring they should have their act together.

grump3_2709's picture

Being free we 'upgraded' several W8 boxes as well as a W7 PC early on but since then they remain unused so no longer show up in the stats as at the time we had also trialled, & found Linux Mint far more suited to our requirements. Sorry MS, but we've found a better mousetrap.

Navy vet's picture

I have upgraded about 15 Windows 7 and about 4 Windows 8.1 PCs. Most have gone smoothly.
Some as quickly as 1 hour. Several,however, about 6 PCs would not upgrade successfully no matter what I tried. I tried every solution on the many forums and spent hours on the phone with Microsoft support. I even tried the upgrade after a clean installation of the eligible OS, all to no avail. I think this is one reason for the slowdown in adoption of Windows 10. Some computers simply will not accept Windows 10, no matter what. When the upgrade works, Windows 10 has lots of great new features and is a worthwhile upgrade. If the upgrade fails, too much troubleshooting is required.

Tallpaultn's picture

Hi Dennis,

I was using WinVista SP2 on a Dell Computer. It sorta died so I purchased a refurbished Lenovo computer with Win8.1 on it. Didn't want to learn Win8.1 & then have to learn Win10 later so I immediately upgraded the Lenovo computer to Win10.

I've had a few minor glitches here & there, but overall Win10 is performing amazingly well for me.

My Lenovo computer is an AMD Quadcore with 8GB Ram & 1Tbyte hard drive with quite a few other bells & whistles.

The learning curve from WinVista to Win10 is pretty steep, but I've been able to master it rather well so far & I'm almost 68 years young. I love Win10 & am looking forward to future Microsoft updates to it.

stooobeee's picture

I think enough people caught wind of their privacy issues, and while they may have curtailed some of their sending information "home", people will not easily forget it, or trust Microsoft no matter how much they walk it back. This is an age where privacy and trust are huge, and if a company gives even a faltering thought to the safety and concern of its customers, it will be remembered as a strike against them for a long time.

TranceWarp's picture

One of the biggest reasons for slow adoption for nVidia GPU users I am seeing right now is due to nVidia display driver problems concerning users with mixed GPU setups.

To explain this, I'll explain my setup: an EVGA GeForce 760 GTX OC in slot one with an EVGA GeForce 550 Ti GTX SC in slot two strictly for PhysX use. The 760 is a Kepler GPU, while the 550 Ti is Fermi.

Microsoft introduced WDDM 2.0 for use with the New DirectX 12 API. This would not normally be an issue. However, the current nVidia driver state has Kepler and above running the WDDM 2.0 standard while Fermi remains at WDDM 1.3. As the standards are not compatible for some reason, this causes the card in slot 2 to not work at all (with the yellow "!" sign by that driver listing).

nVidia has stated that there would be a WDDM 2.0 driver for Fermi available during the Fall Quarter. It's almost ended and the only proof that they've been working on a Fermi driver was a recent developer driver that was pulled off the site after only a day or two.

Considering that nVidia and Microsoft have had teething problems with the Windows Update/GeForce Experience feature as well, nVidia gamers are a little leary at the moment. Me personally - I liked Windows 10 and was a little flabbergasted that a game that wasn't working well in Windows 7, even on a clean install, (Blazblue: Calamity Trigger) was working flawlessly with no stuttering. If nVidia manages to release a Fermi WDDM 2.0 compatible driver, I'll gladly move back to Win10. But until then, I'll stick with 7.

Update: nVidia has released a WDDM 2.0 driver for Fermi as of December 23rd. I have since moved to Windows 10 with no further problems.

kitekrazy's picture

Updates on a W10 box removes any changes I have made. There is no significant improvement on W10 that would make me dump W7. I may even pass on the free upgrade.

Stuart Berg's picture

I'm one of those people that is very happy with Windows 7 (64-bit) but know that I will eventually upgrade to Windows 10. Consequently, I'm waiting until sometime in the Spring of 2016 to upgrade. Just yesterday (12/1/2015) I received optional update KB3112343 (Windows 8.1 got KB3112336) which fixes an issue that "occurs because memory on the client computer is fragmented when Windows Update agent scans the client computer".

The point is that Microsoft is still fixing upgrade problems so I have no problem waiting so that I have the best shot of having it go smoothly.

gbruce40_3626's picture

I upgraded my desktop, an Asus i7 with 16GB of memory without problems. I find Windows 10 (64 bit) to be a step forward.
Now I am trying to upgrade my Dell 17" laptop, an older i7 with 8GB memory and windows 7 (64 bit). The Windows upgrade check says "This PC works with Windows 10" but I need to uninstall AVG identity theft protection 9 and AVG Technologies CZ, s.r.o. I have no idea what these programs are, I probably tried them out some time ago, then uninstalled them. Windows 10 will not install as it finds these programs and stops, waiting for me to uninstall them. Its possibly something left behind in the registry, so I have searched with Regedit and cleaned out all possibilities. No luck! AVG must know about this problem as they have provided a free stand alone uninstaller which doesn't work. :(
If AVG is incompatible with Windows 10, why would it not just ignore the fragments of AVG and continue the install?
consequently I am forced to keep Windows 7, which may not be a bad thing.