A new report has emerged about Windows 11 and its user base. According to the findings, Microsoft's latest operating system crossed the 400 million active devices mark, a surprisingly high number that beats the company's initial expectations.
Windows 11 turned two this month, and its growth is unsurprisingly slower than its predecessor's. Windows 10 was a free update for Windows 7 and 8.1 customers without strict hardware requirements. Besides, Microsoft created an artificial sense of urgency by claiming the update is free only for the first year. That encouraged more people to pull the trigger early, even though the free upgrade was available for eight years (Microsoft closed it in September 2023).
Windows 11, on the other hand, has steep hardware requirements that render still capable computers unable to run Microsoft's latest operating system—you are out of luck if your PC has no TPM or it runs a processor older than Intel's 8th gen or AMD's 2nd gen Ryzen. In addition, some people object to Windows 11's controversial changes, such as the redesigned Start menu (check out this article detailing what Windows 11 users think about it), new context menus, etc.
Microsoft understood that Windows 11's hardware requirements would slow the system's growth, so the company set modest expectations. However, according to the report, Windows 11's 400+ million active devices are much higher than what Microsoft expected from the operating system.
Windows 11 is expected to reach half a billion devices in 2024. At the same time, we expect Microsoft to release a successor to it somewhere in the second half of the year. Windows "12" will allegedly bring significant platform changes, better integration with Cloud PC, new AI-powered features, and more UI changes. It will be interesting to see what lessons Microsoft learned from the launch of Windows 11, a good yet highly controversial operating system.
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