Depending on who is doing the talking, Windows XP currently commands a market share in the range of either 33 percent or 21 percent worldwide. The former are the latest figures from Net Applications, and the latter, straight from Microsoft.

But no matter what the percentage is, this much is certain that the Windows XP user base is now actively trying to migrate to a newer version of the world’s most popular operating system.

And while Microsoft is hoping that most of them choose between its latest platforms — either Windows 8 or Windows 8.1, it seems very likely that this may not exactly happen.

According to Annette Jump, the research director at Gartner, most windows XP users (including companies and businesses that are in need of upgrading) are planning to move to Windows 7.

In an interview with The Guardian, the analyst said:

“We’ve seen a large migration from XP to Windows 7 in the last 18 months, and will likely see an acceleration of that trend as support for XP ceases at the end of 2014. Companies are not looking at Windows 8 or 8.1 unless they are using touch-enabled laptops or tablets, which likely came with Windows 8 pre-installed.”

Nevertheless, there are two good things coming out of this — first is that users are, in fact, migrating, and secondly, they are not choosing Windows Vista.

There is a chance that Microsoft will not mind this too much. Windows 7 is a very solid operating system, one of the finest available on the market right now. And this still leaves an opportunity open for these businesses to upgrade to Windows 8 (or Windows 9) later down the road.

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  1. Heck most XP users don’t even want to move to Windows 7, so how is this news? I still know people that you simply cannot convince to move to Windows 7. I have absolutely no idea what is going on in their head. A vast majority of them are not going to move to Windows 8. That is correct. This is different than when Windows 7 came out. People had to jump to 7 because Vista had already been discounted as viable upgrade. Windows 7 doesn’t have that issue, so people will be more likely to move to the “in-between” OS, or at least the one that is more like the one they’re one now. But heck if only 30-40% of the XP people move to 8.x, Microsoft is sitting pretty. Plus, of course business are going to move to 7. It’s highly unlikely for companies to make a jump of two OS versions, unless the next one has been set aside as Vista was. And it is going to take time for people to stop being fooled by the misconception that Windows 8.x is for “touch-enable laptops or tablets.”

  2. So long as it is Windows (no matter the flavor) rather than a competing OS, Microsoft wins. Sure, they’d prefer Windows 8/8.1 to be the upgrade of choice but money is still money, after all. The bottom line counts, and that you can take to the bank.

  3. Microsoft knows this and are open about embracing it. And, to Ray C’s point, some won’t move at all.

    Here is a breakdown of the types that won’t switch, and it doesn’t matter how good the new OS is:

  4. Yeah, my grandmother said the same thing. “Not all XP users are interested in 8.1” , then she said “Not all politicians are honest” She still share, hey?

  5. Win8 is not as power hungry as win7 and runs faster. Win8 probably is a better choice to those old XP machines if they don’t mind the UI. But of course, people are not totally logical. To MS, they don’t really care because they will collect cash in both cases.

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