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According to statistics released by NetMarketShare, Microsoft’s latest operating system update, Windows 8.1, was adopted by consumers much more quickly in its first month than Windows 8 was in its first month of availability.

In the month of October, Windows 8.1 doubled its desktop market share among consumers to 1.72%, an increase from its 0.87% penetration in September. Importantly though, these numbers are based not on the percentage of all Windows machines, just all desktop machines.

Conversely, Apple’s OS X currently maintains a 7.73% share of the global PC market as Mavericks continues to catch on with buyers.

Comparing the launch of Windows 8 to Windows 8.1 is certainly doable, but gets a tad dicey. After all, Windows 8 was sold as units in the physical marketplace, in addition to being available digitally. Windows 8.1, on the other hand, is only available as a download.

And since Windows 8 launched on October 26, 2012, a large portion of its launch market share were likely people running assorted pre-release versions of the operating system – beta candidates, for those more informed. And even though it launched about as late in the month as it could have, it wrapped its first few days on the market with a 0.41% market share. It gained steam in November when it garnered 1.09% of the market, followed by the 1.72% it had as of December.

os_share_october_2013-730x497

As we recently discovered, Windows 8.1 hit the very same 1.72% milestone in just under a month, given that the OS launched on October 17 of this year. Already, Windows 8.1 has left some of Windows 8’s launch stats in the dust.

However, its release slowed the OS upgrade rate among consumers and increased the sales rate of new PCs exponentially. In short, in October, Windows 8.1 sold enough on new PCs to dominate 0.85% of the market, while new Windows 8-running machines lost 0.49% of its market placement to 8.1 during that month.

Overall, Windows 8 gained a peak market share of 8.02% as of September 2013, beating out Apple’s Mac OS X audience by a significant margin. From here, Windows 8.1 has the full month of November to plant its feet and burrow deep into the minds of consumers – from there, all it has to do is get on their PCs.

Let’s see how they do.

[Source: NetMarketShare]

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