Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer displays Windows Phone 8 devices at the Qualcomm pre-show keynote at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas January 7, 2013. (Photo : Reuters)
Now that Windows 8 has been out for three months, Microsoft is touting its adoption rate and sales, though the company is reserved in its announcements.
"More than 60 million licenses sold is on par with the record setting pace we saw with Windows 7. We feel good about our start with Windows 8 -- and of course there is still much more to do," said Tami Reller, Microsoft's Chief Marketing Officer and Chief Financial Officer, in a blog post.
Windows 8 is the latest version of the operating system behemoth, and it attempts to incorporate new mobile uses directly into the interface.
Recption has been mixed, and sales of the Windows Surface RT, which uses a pared-down mobile version of the operating system have been sluggish. On Feb. 8. Microsoft finally released the Surface Pro, an ultrabook/tablet hybrid that boasts a full-featured Windows 8 operating system that the company hopes will reinvigorate sales.
"We think this is a solid start to the Windows 8 launch," Reller told the Los Angeles Times. "Change takes time. But we all have a shared sense of optimism and opportunity."
Still, third-party developers and companies haven't been full-throated in their endorsement of Windows 8, though many devices are in the works for 2013.
While Reller happily announced the Windows Store passed the 100 million download mark for apps, she didn't mention that some popular apps, like Twitter, still haven't been released.
Analysts say adoption rates have been slower than for Windows 8's predecessor, Windows Vista, but upgrade prices just jumped dramatically this month, after an upgrade sale ended, though students can still get relatively inexpensive upgrades.
But the main issue is that consumers just aren't used to the big changes in Windows 8. People who like Windows tend to shy away from change, or be giant corporate clients who actively hate change, so the redesign of the flagship product is a hard sell, and unless the new Windows laptops and tablets really begin to wow consumers this year, Microsoft is in trouble.