back to article Windows 7 soars while Mac OS X trips online

Windows 7 saw healthy growth in web-tracked usage in its first full month of release while Mac OS X found itself moving in a direction Cupertino is not used to: downward. The web-watchers at NetApplications report that when tracked on a daily basis, Windows 7 now accounts for five per cent of operating systems using the web. …


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  1. raving angry loony

    count me out

    Given my sorry experiences so far with MacOS 10.6, I can see why people might not want to get it. After my series of fiascos I'd happily boot Linux on this iMac and be shot of Snow Leopard if bloody could. Nice hardware, but the software is definitely showing the ego of the Apple execs.

    I sure as hell won't be getting whatever abortion they come up with next.

    1. Mikey 1

      count me in

      It may be a little early to have started playing in the Snow for you?

      The first few dots on the Leopard where also rather frustrating though by the time it got to 10.5.8 it was lovely.

      Yes, I've been left a little wanting with this one, it's growing up nicely however, now it's 3 months in with the .2 fur on it.

      Seems the trend continues for MacOSX - if it brings in the foldable for you, hang on until a .3 or .4 before upgrading. - oh, well unless you just bought a new machine that is.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      count me out 2

      Have recently sold two Mac's and just about to get rid of a third. I tried Apple Mac's for 5 years and to be honest it failed to impress. The expensive hardware failed as often as my Windows machines, the updates were just as buggy (if not more so) and out of warranty a Mac can easily be beyond economical repair with even a small fault.

      The cost of software makes you feel like you are propping up a small country and discounts are laughable.

      If I could take one piece of Mac software to Windows 7 it would be iPhoto but as Picasa 3 and Photo Gallery are gaining ground very fast.

  2. Joe 3

    Top of the Ops

    Is it only me that reads this article with a Top 40-style voice and background music? (In my "mind's ear" that is, not out loud. Mine's from the 80s, but yours may vary due to birth year.)

  3. danny_0x98

    Some Stats Stat

    The curve that was missing was the XP curve, but that would muck up the scale.

    So, 2.02% of XP users and 1.49% of Vista users went to Windows 7 in the period. I was led to believe that the Vista to Win7 upgrade was the no-brainer, but some folks I gather are thinking. One could not call it a stampede of XP users at this moment. At this rate, XP users will be vested in Windows 7 in 50 months and Vista users will be converted over in 67 months. With December 2012 only 24 months away, I predict 2013 will be the year of the Linux desktop.

    Honestly, this data point doesn't really say very much. Sometime in 2010, XP numbers will fall and Windows 7 numbers will increase rapidly because corporate IT will believe they can trust Win7 and will start replacing old machines with new. (As long as the recession doesn't double dip.)

    As to OS X... does anyone really care? If it falls below 4% does this MBP I'm typing on sublimate into vapor? Because, if so, I'd appreciate a warning.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      A fool and his money are easily parted!

      " I was led to believe that the Vista to Win7 upgrade was the no-brainer,"

      Well if you want to pay twice sure it is... I think the Vista crowd are just going to keep beying until they get thier deserved free upgrade.

    2. M 6

      Poor Predictions

      " I predict 2013 will be the year of the Linux desktop."

      How did you come to that conclusion!? I think you mean 3013.

      1. TeeCee Gold badge

        More Prediction

        It'll be easy to spot "the year of the Linux desktop", it'll be the very same year as the official "death of COBOL".

        I reckon that if you want to chuck a long-running IT gag around, you might as well go with one that's got some serious milage on it.

  4. h 6
    Jobs Halo


    Interesting how MacOS X usage jumped quite a bit around the introduction of Windows 7.

    1. James O'Brien

      @h 6

      Umm didnt it also drop as much shortly after? So in the end it balanced out right?

      On a side isnt the pengiun an endangered species somewhere?

    2. Akrabat

      Re OS X usage jumping

      That's because all the Mac users were testing it in a VM...

  5. This post has been deleted by its author

  6. Arctic fox

    Big Mac

    ""Today, Apple gets one out every ten dollars spent on home computers worldwide."

    Given their market-share in terms of numbers of units contra the above it says something about Mac's prices, hmmm?

    1. Hugh_Pym

      @Arctic Fox

      Yes it does. They can only sell PCs by cutting the margins to the bone.

  7. Big-nosed Pengie

    More bullshit

    from NetApplications. Proving once again that 87.3% of all statistics are made up on the spot.

    1. The BigYin


      If only the argument was so easy. Please either show your counter-data and argument, your differing analysis of the raw data or hold your tongue (well, fingers in this case).

      Linux penetration remains at 1% (basically a rounding error) and it will continue to do so for a long, long time. This is, if I understand things correctly, because the Linux world is not focused on the desktop, but on the back-end (serves, clouds etc) and more "embedded" systems (set-top boxes, sat navs erc).

      This explains a few things

      1) Why Linux does so poorly on web state

      2) Why basic features are missing/run poorly on a Linux distro (e.g. Flash, VPN, multi-head...)*

      This may well change if Droid gains traction, but you can bet that Droid will be separated out and not counted as Linux (just as OSX is not counted as Unix).

      *Yes, fanbois, I know these things *can* be done, but support is no where near as ubiquitous as it is on Windows and it is all hit-and-miss. I know - I've tried.**

      **Yes, you may now say I'm too dumb to use Linux and I should go back to Windoze. Thank you for continuing to be the problem in the Linux community. You know where you can shove your pocket protector, don't you?

      1. Anonymous Coward

        hear hear

        2) Why basic features are missing/run poorly on a Linux distro (e.g. Flash, VPN, multi-head...)*

        This my biggest gripe with Ubuntu ... the bog-standard install will not carry anything which is not GNU-licensed. So (for example) Java is missing. No problem to install it (it's in the repositories). But it's something someone who knows how to use synaptic has to know what to do.

        Flash is slightly different, as browsing to a flash-enabled page will bring up a plugin installer dialog. But then you get a choice of 3 players, which would frazzle a noddy user.

        All power to Ubuntu for trying to maintain their open source roots, but zero points for making a meaningful noddy user desktop system.

  8. Mike S

    One in Five Dollars go to Apple?

    "Today, Apple gets one out every ten dollars spent on home computers worldwide. In the US, its dollar share is more than one in five." - some Apple exec.

    Wasn't it reported on the Reg not too long ago that Apple had 48% of the revenue?

    Like... here:

  9. Anonymous Coward


    Is this even statistically significant?

  10. Anonymous Coward

    Apples and Oranges

    OS X is held to a higher standard by Mac users.

    Myself, I have noted that all the applications I need to use are only recently reported by the respective vendors as being ready for the new release. I am now waiting to see how many updates come out for these "first releases" before even contemplating the update.

    BTW -- How much of this web usage is driven by patch updates to windows? It would be fascinating to see those periods indicated on the graphs as well.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Dubious achievement

    My machines are firmly holding with XPpro. Concentrating on "computing" with large numerical models, using new, old and older legacy software that had to be manually installed to run on XP, and having little or no interest in pop culture and its mind-numbing manifestations, why should I? I've achieved a relatively high level of productivity with what I have and risking all of that for a promise from demonstrable incompetents isn't in my repertoire. I refused to bite on Vista and damned glad I didn't.

    I know, MS will try to coerce me to change and I will dig in my heels - until they start launching suicide bombs through their updates, if they ever offer another update for XP.

    1. Shades


      By updates are you referring to Automatic Updates? If so, I too have noticed a very, very sharp decline in the amount of updates sent down the pipes since the launch of Win7! Coincidence?? Seems to me that MS are giving up patching XP so that enough problems accumulate, turning what is, if we are honest, actually a pretty mature and stable* OS into another "reason" to upgrade to Win7.

      * I can't remember the last time I saw a BSOD and the only PC I know that does crash is because of a hardware fault... the fault being that vibration from a sound system causes the graphics card to slide out of its slot... which reminds me... must get some gaffa tape!!!

  12. Tony Paulazzo

    Linux blip

    >The few, the proud, the penguins.<

    +1 here for discovering the joys of Ubuntu, and hey, there are themes that give you mac / win style look and feel if that's what you need.

    1. That Awful Puppy


      Oh yes, please, let me have wobbly windows and desktop themes rather than a system that works with, well, you know, real world apps. As in office suites (and no, Open Bloody Orifice does not count, because it manages to screw up even simple Word documents in a spectacular fashion) or Photoshop (GIMP? Knee grow, please ...).

      Linux is like the kit Lancia Top Gear tested - great fun to tinker with, looks lovely, shame the brakes jam up after a few laps.

      1. Anonymous Coward


        ... all depends what you use the computer for, doesn't it?

        I can't remember the last time I used an office suite for anything more than the basics, and those work equally well in Word, Open Office or Google Docs. GIMP does everything I ask of it. And my blood pressure's significantly lower for not having to dig through Windows' labyrinthine dialogs any time I want to change the least setting.

        Various sayings about horses and courses spring to mind.

        1. Geoffrey W

          Windows dialogs?

          Labrynthine dialogs? Well at least Windows has dialogs. My first experience with the supposedly user friendly UBUNTU was last year when I installed it in VirtualBox. No problems with the install. It went in lovely. Then I tried to install the VirtualBox additions. Insufficient rights. Fair enough, but how to get those rights. No dialogs that I could see. I had no idea what the admin account was either, if there was one, because there was no prompting to enter user details for one at the install. So what to do? Off to the forums. Snide comments, laughter, and a bit of real advice. I tried several "Solutions", none of which I could get to work. You want to know about blood pressure? After some time struggling on with something that, to be honest, offered me nothing I couldn't already do, I deleted the damn virtual disk and got on with some real work.

          Dont bother offering any advice now. I tried again this year and succeeded but, jeez, what a palaver. I still have the VM on my disk but cant remember when I last cranked it up or why I would bother to again. Give me those dialogs anyday, and the massive support resource I can find on line.

  13. Anonymous Coward

    Hey Rik - do you know any thing about statistics??

    "while Mac OS X found itself moving in a direction Cupertino is not used to: downward"

    Excuse me but the change over the last few months is similar to the NOISE that one sees between Jan and June 2008. Give me longer time scales and bigger changes!

    1. Annihilator Silver badge
      Thumb Down


      I could easily interpret from that limited set of data, that Mac use takes a jump at the end of each year, and then varies with statistical insignificance through the year.

      The only thing that you can reasonably infer from that graph, is that Windows 7 is selling. Brilliant. I would never have guessed.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Lies, damn lies and statistics!

    Ah, statistics! If you want to see one thing, you will, if you want to see something different next time you look, you will.

    Stats and especially graphs, are only good for one thing. Impressing management so you can secure a bit more cash for new toys at work! Other than that, they are generally meaningless!

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Halo


    Why are you people registered on a tech forum?

    Most of you are utterly clueless.

    Margins, margins margins.

    Apple will be more valuable than Microsoft by 2013. Who cares about market share?

    (It's only a W7 blip anyway. Doh)

  16. Doug Glass

    Lemon, uh I Mean Apple

    If you look at the graph, you can count seven downturns in Apple's line. But over the long term that meant nothing. The TREND is steady upward. That is, generally, the mark of a good business plan.

    Say what you want to about Apple, they're do something right. Methinks a lots of somethings right.

  17. Peter Kay


    I'm not a big Apple fan, but drawing trends from one month's activity isn't sensible, especially when the trend in the year to date is upwards. Look again in six months and *then* draw conclusions..

  18. Neal 5

    Yes, it is all lies.

    When these statistics are transposed onto my setup, these statistics are complete BS. For a start I don't even entertain Mac or OS x any more, and the one linux version I have running is on a VM workstation using XP as a host, along with which I have 3 more XP machines, a Vista machine and now two Win 7's running,and in reserve and unused on the web, I have 4 Win 95's and 2 Win 98's boxes. And in some fashion, I don't believe this to much different to many people running multiple boxes.

    Does someone just make up all these figures for OS X and Linux, just to pretend that there is some competition out there? I bet this is really just a MS marketing ploy.

    1. The BigYin

      Here's a clue

      A sample of one (yourself) is not statistically significant.

  19. Gavin McMenemy


    Looking at the curves, over this short time span, then (with the exception of Win7) there's pretty much nothing but status quo to see here. You can interpret trend by in the manner you appear to have done. Also , a more interesting graph might be a comparison of XP-Vista-Win7. I'd be interested in seeing how much XP and Vista's share has eroded against win7.

    I might be making too much of an extrapolation here but both Linux AND MacOS appear to grow (albeit slowly) over time ...

  20. magnetik
    Dead Vulture


    The way the article's written you'd think OS X is sinking like the Titanic. Let's wait a few more months before we make rash predictions, shall we?

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Confused much?

      I think you're confusing the article with the headline, which was clearly designed to bait people like you.

    2. Ross 7


      This is the internet God damnit! We don't wait for anything - post now, think later!

  21. RichyS

    Easily explained

    The uptick in Win 7 web usage can easily be explained away by Win 6.1 users desperately scrabbling around for working drivers, and the usual deluge of MS patches and hotfixes.

    I love statistics. They can explain anything...

  22. breakfast

    More informative?

    It would perhaps make a more informative comparison to see how Vista and XP performed over a comparable timespan following release.

  23. Charlie Clark Silver badge

    In other news

    In Germany Firefox (combined) overtook IE (combined) according to

    This ties in reasonably well with stats from German sites I know.

    Anyone know how the browser makers will comply with the new EU law on cookies? Comes into force in the whole of the EU by the 26th April 2011 at the latest.

  24. Ascylto


    Could this be due to the new Windows 7 feature .... BSOD?

    No, not the old Blue Screen of Death ... that is still available.


    Available ONLY with Windows 7.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      two things

      a) it is caused by malware, not MS

      b) it affects Vista and XP too

    2. N2

      yep, had that

      And its cousin Red


    3. Reality Dysfunction

      black screen of death is malware not OS

      black screen of death is malware not OS....... as prevx have already aknowledged

      and doesnt just do win7

  25. Doug Glass

    $1 out of $10 Huh???

    Right, and that works out to be about 2 out of 7 machines when you consider market share.

    Funny thing about 7. A bud of mine who swore he'd never use either Vista or 7 has bought a Windows 7 laptop with Home Premium. Why? Because the XP machine he built for his college freshman son died from multiple organ failure and the kid needed something immediately. Now he's just built his first Windows 7 machine with quad core processor, 4GB RAM and etc. All he had to do was play with it for a while and, as they say, the rest is history.

    Apple was truly never a consideration.

    I love it. And you Lummocks boys keep paddling. We need somebody to sweep up as the parade passes.

  26. Anonymous Coward

    "high margins"

    Two words which sum up why so many of us don't like Apple, and treat as a special kind of idiot those who do.

  27. Wonko the Sane


    "+1 here for discovering the joys of Ubuntu, and hey, there are themes that give you mac / win style look and feel if that's what you need."

    Understanding this deep is why it will never be the Year of the Linux desktop.

  28. A. Lewis


    Just goes to show. The majority of vista users are those poor buggers who bought a system with it preinstalled and don't know any better.

  29. Dan Wilkinson

    Apple and Pears

    Now this would be more interesting if they were showing what percentage of web usage was windows based, and how much of that was the new version of windows, and then comparing that against how much was Mac OS X based, and how much of that was the new version of OS X, particularly when compared to the same timescales.

    The interesting thing is surely not Mac V OS X, but instead how ready the users of those "competing" operating systems are to upgrade to the latest, and how many won't budge from XP/Tiger etc etc.

    But that wouldn't allow them to beat the drum in the same way, so I can see why they would choose to misrepresent instead ;)

  30. Anonymous Coward


    If Microsoft are offering a FREE replacement for the Vista pile of Crap that came with my Laptop I might consider it, in the mean-time I'll stick with Linux (it works better than Vista).

  31. Anonymous Coward
    IT Angle

    curious title

    "Windows 7 soars while Mac OS X trips online"

    "The breakdown of which operating systems Windows 7 is taking share from in November is as follows: Windows XP -1.43%, Windows Vista -0.28%, All Mac Versions -0.15%"

    Also, what methodology did NetApplications use to come to these conclusions.

  32. Steve Foster

    @Top of the Ops

    You mean something like this:

    1. Joe 3
      Thumb Up


      That's the spirit, but specifically I had this music in my head:

      Perhaps I'm a bit younger than you!

  33. No, I will not fix your computer
    Thumb Up


    5% of the coverage but $1 in every $10 spent, sounds like Macs cost twice as much as Windows PCs, or put another way, a PC is half the price (or twice the value). Anyone surprised?

    My girlfriend uses Vista on her laptop with Office 2007, I built a netbook (for Uni) with Ubuntu and Open Office, as much as it does a similar job it wasn't close enough to be worth the effort of learning another tool (and yes, her time is so precious that a few hours makes all the difference), so on went W7 & Office 2007 instead, it's nice and quick and does the job.

  34. Paletti

    Got both systems... considerations

    I've got both systems and might say that Windows 7 improved a lot from Vista. I read recently about a "black screen of death" problem on Windows 7 but i still didn't see it. Windows 7 improves the user experience and it's visually more modern. It seems more stable in line with XP SP2.

    Anyway i always read a lot of pros and cons about MacOS and decided to give a try on MacOS X Snow Leopard (bought a Macbook 13") and let me say i'm liking it a lot! It works well, very fast, great window manager and usability. It was indeed a good surprise for me. The price of the Macbook should be cheaper but paying only $28 for Mac OS X Snow Leopard OS is cheap.

    Both are great products and each person should ideally try each and judge for her own. I don't think MacOS is that "scary monster and menace" that Microsoft people is afraid of and wants that 1% extra marketshare... it's greedy! But i also understand that with Windows 7 being a good product, Microsoft wants to payback and get revenge of all those Apple advertisements "Mac vs PC"! :-)

    Regarding Linux, well i have also tried several recent distributions, it's OK, made a lot of progress on last years, it works really fine, a lot of FREE software available, it's closer to common consumer but without the commercial support from the main HW manufacturers it won't be a real business and won't reach the mass market.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Groundhog Day

      OSX = easy to use, ultrasecure, beautiful, just works, blah blah

      Windows 7 = familiar, ubiquitous, compatibility, much improved, blah blah

      Linux ? much improved, secure, more technical, hardware issues, not quite there yet, blah blah

      Can't we change this record now? I'm thinking of that montage scene in The Parallax View

      Try this:

      Linux = ubiquitous, just works, secure, beautiful, much improved, blah blah

      OSX = familiar, not quite there yet, compatibility, much improved, blah blah

      Windows 7 ? ultrasecure, more technical, easy to use, hardware issues, blah blah

  35. Christopher Rogers
    Thumb Up

    I'm no Fanboi

    But you have to hand it to Apple. They have taken advantage of Microsoft/dell/hp etc mistakes and are successfully selling expensive PCs to the mass market. I wouldn't go for one, but but still.... good work.

  36. Doug Glass


    Who cares about market share? Well, Chrysler, GM, all the once prominent typewriter makers, the Swiss watch makers, and etc. ad infinitum.

    One day soon when you grow up, get a job and actually attempt to provide for your family and create some sort of retirement plan, market share will become very important to you. That is assuming you plan on keeping the money you earn as opposed to squandering it on bad businesses that lose money, fail to adapt and go belly up.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Market share...

      Market share *is* irrelevant. Profitability is what is relevant to businesses and Apple are doing just fine with their OS's "5%". To use your GM analogy (perfect) they have a far greater share of the market than BMW, but BMW are far more profitable and represent a far more profitable investment. Apple make and sell both the hardware and software, which means that they are more profitable per unit sold, which in turn means they require less market share to make a profit vs. Dell, HP, Sony et c. In real terms, they aren't competing with Microsoft. The OS share in itself is a meaningless measure. What is more interesting AND more telling would be hardware sales (ie how Dell/HP/Sony/Acer et c performed vs. Apple). It would also give a more realistic idea of OS distribution. One day soon when you grow up, get a job and actually attempt to provide for your family and create some sort of retirement plan, you'll understand this very simple concept.

      1. MS Rocks

        @Simon Banyard

        hah hah hah classic!!!!!! So Windows is an unprofitable franchise for MS then? Urrrrrrrrr yeaahhh.......

  37. Anthony Hulse

    NetApplications stats are a joke

    These days they weight web hits per country based on that territory's number of Web users to obtain the overall figures, rather than going purely on Web hits alone. Therefore a country like China, which statistically has over 300 million Web users who may only use the Net once every couple of weeks, is positively weighted against a country like the USA where people live on the Internet. It makes the compiled global stats completely meaningless, especially as the only real benefit on these stats, the trending, hasn't now been around long enough under the new system to get a clear idea of the direction.

    Pretty rubbish really.

  38. N2

    Do I detect

    A whiff of competition in the air?

    Perhaps it will keep Apple, Microsoft & Linux developers on their toes summoning the end of products being pushed out the door too soon.

    So what ever O/S you use, I hope it will continue to improve, surely a good thing for every one, consumers, businesses, pros & commentards alike.

  39. alphaxion


    No wonder I often feel like the only techy reading articles on the reg that mention Apple.

    Why would the numbers of patch requests for windows count? Surely they're not covering due to the amount of bias that would create, likewise they wouldn't be covering either - since my macbook grabs updates with a similar degree of frequency to my windows boxes.

    Also, the number of people grubbing for drivers would be pretty minimal since vista drivers work in win7 and the rest of users would either have bought the OS with a new system or be using a system deployed by an IT department.

    Come on, use your brain and stop being an obvious troll.

    And yes, the trend for Apple is upwards and good news for those of us who are interested in computing in geneeral, rather than braindead fanbois of either persuasion.

    More successful OS makers means a greater amount of things to play with :)

    Oh, and the black screen of death, isn't that just the old netlogon problem from waaay back in NT days where it was waiting on a response from a server before loading the profile? Anyone checked the DRM module to see if it's having trouble finding its server?

  40. Anonymous Coward

    They could lie...

    ... and say Apple are doing great, but then no one would believe them ever again.

  41. Lewis Mettler 1

    just wonder

    I just wonder how much better the Mac OS would do if Apple actively sought out HP, DELL, ACER and others to pre-load Snow Leopard?

    Sure it is nice selling the whole expensive pie. But, with triple the marketshare comes great benefits, called applications.

    Maybe Microsoft is telling Apple that if it does not restrict itself Microsoft will drop the office suite?

    Of course opening up the applications marketplace for the Mac may be likewise for Linux.

    1. Deadlock Victim

      Pre-load Snow Leopard?

      "I just wonder how much better the Mac OS would do if Apple actively sought out HP, DELL, ACER and others to pre-load Snow Leopard?"

      Why in the world would they do that? Apple makes money on the hardware, not the software. Mac fans are going to buy a Mac regardless of the applications. Apple is already ridiculously profitable, why screw it up?

    2. magnetik

      @Lewis Mettler 1

      " But, with triple the marketshare comes great benefits, called applications."

      Funny, I haven't found a single Windows application that I need on my Mac. Also interesting that Windows fan tout the number of applications as a Good Thing [tm] then ridicule the iPhone for its huge number of applications. I prefer a few good applications to a load of crap.

      "Maybe Microsoft is telling Apple that if it does not restrict itself Microsoft will drop the office suite?"

      I doubt that, Microsoft make a ton of money from selling Office for the Mac, though I suspect that number is dwindling with the likes of iWork and OpenOffice becoming more popular.


    Nothing new. When Vista appeared the chart looked in exactly the same way, but after two months (when people actually used M$'s new OS and returned to XP after the unsuccessful experiment) things changed - Mac stood up, XP gained old levels.

  43. danny_0x98


    Dude: 36 months to December 2012. I re-ran your numbers and I get that 2013 is the year of the haiku desktop. I confirmed those findings with the Magic 8-Ball.

  44. Will Godfrey Silver badge


    Why are there no lines for XP and Vista on the chart, or better still and aggragate of all Windows usage?

  45. This post has been deleted by its author

  46. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Business success

    I was going to post the following:

    "5.12% market share for OS-X?? Snigger! :-D"

    Then I thought about the profits and success of Apple The Business, and well... I don't think they're too upset about that really in the big scheme of things!

  47. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Halo

    @Doug Glass

    Awww Poor Doug.

    He thinks market share in some way relates to a good business! lol How sweet.

    Google "margins" sometime and go back to school.

    Some people.

    PS I have made more money from AAPL since 1998 than you will in your entire career.

  48. Kanhef


    To begin with, the quality of their data is questionable. The hits are recorded by a self-selecting set of websites whose traffic may not be representative of the Web as a whole. (Remember that Web != Internet.) Browsers have long misidentified themselves to fool sites that check user-agent strings. I consider the country-level weighting very dubious. Many developing countries have heavily-used internet cafes, but not many home computers. This inflates the users-to-computers ratio, so weighting by population significantly overestimates the number of computers. It's better than nothing, but their numbers should be considered to have a large margin of error, and are most accurate only for long-term trends, not absolute quantities.

    Next, Windows 7 went to public beta in January, release candidate at the end of April, and on sale in October. Which corresponds perfectly to the increases in market share. No surprises here.

    Finally, there are obviously month-to-month fluctuations, so a single-month decline means nothing. What is significant is that over the last two years, the Mac share grew from about 3.7% to 5.1%, and Linux from 0.7% to 1%. Apple is getting more people to use their high-priced computers during an economic depression - they must be doing something right.

  49. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Very dark.

    Am I the only one thinking that 5%, 4% and 1% add up to 10% and that this graph proves, therefore, that most people aren't using Windows, MacOS or Linux but some other mysterious 'dark OS' which can only be observed by its effects on other operating systems?

    'Dark browsers' also appear to exist, but exhibit less of a pull as only about 8% of browsers aren't mentioned in the article. Could one of these dark browsers be the infamous Nutscrape which was thought to have become extinct?

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