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A recently published analysis on NetMarketShare covering November reveals that Microsoft’s Windows 8.1—the upgraded version of its flagship OS, Windows 8—is gaining ground month after month. Currently, it holds a mere 2.64 percent of the desktop operating system market share, but that’s a significant improvement over its 1.72 percent market share from October, a gain of nearly a whole percentage point. And in September, while the OS upgrade was still in beta, it only held about 0.87 percent.

The market share of Windows 8 is also shrinking at relatively the same rate that 8.1’s share is growing. In October, Windows 8’s share was at 7.53 percent, while in November it clocked in at the ominous percentage of 6.66—a difference just a few tenths of a percent below 8.1’s gains. The message in the data there is clear: Windows 8 users upgrading, with a few extra folks jumping right into 8.1.

On the flipside, Windows 7 adoption continues to grow as well, though not quite as much as it did in September, before 8.1 left beta for a full launch at the start of the next month. In November, 7 had 46.64 percent of the market, a gain of only 0.22 percent. But the fact that Windows 7 continues to grow despite the availability of both Windows 8 and 8.1 is a bit troubling for those hoping the OS finds its footing.

For my part, I tried Windows 8.1 on my Dell Latitude 10, to disastrous results. The update was so problematic for my computer’s stability that I simply had to revert back to Windows 8. In that time, I’ve had the computer replaced because of a few other chronic technical hiccups, so I’m willing to believe that my Latitude was the one at fault rather than Windows 8.1. That said, I’m definitely gun shy about going for it, since reinstalling Windows 8 on my machine was a major pain in the ass, as was reconfiguring my system and getting all my data back on there. I think I might just wait it out until Windows 8.2 rolls around.


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