Microsoft’s Windows 10 operating system overtook 8.1 for the first time globally in January, according to independent web analytics company StatCounter. Its analytics arm, StatCounter Global Stats finds that Windows 10 hit 13.7% in terms of desktop internet usage compared to 11.7% for Windows 8.1. Microsoft’s latest operating system is still some way behind Windows 7 which represented 46.7% of internet usage worldwide in January.


In Ireland Windows 10 overtook 8.1 in December and is now up to 21.2%. Windows 7 still leads the Irish market on 35%, down from 48% in January of last year.


Windows 10 is now at 15.7% in the US and overtook 8.1 in December. Windows 7 still leads the US on 40.5%. In the UK Windows 10 is powering ahead with 22.4% in January compared to 12.5% for 8.1. Win 10 overtook 8.1 in October. Windows 7 represents 36.8% of internet usage in the UK.

“Microsoft’s determined promotion of Windows 10 seems to be having an impact,” commented Aodhan Cullen, CEO, StatCounter. “However, there remains a lot of loyalty to Windows 7 and it will be interesting to see if it becomes the equivalent of XP which, 14 years after launch, refuses to lie down and still has a 8% global share in terms of desktop internet use.”

StatCounter analysis of the first six months finds that Windows 10 usage is greater than Windows 8 and Windows 7 over the same time period globally, in the US, UK and Ireland.

Worldwide usage of Windows 10 after six calendar months (since August) was 13.7% compared to 5.0% for Windows 8 and 13.5% for Windows 7 at their initial half year stage (Table A).

Table A. Desktop internet usage share for sixth calendar month since launch

Windows 10

(Jan 2016)

Windows 8                                  

(April 2013)

Windows 7

(April 2010)

Worldwide 13.7% 5.0% 13.5%
US 15.7% 5.8% 14.7%
UK 22.4% 6.6% 15.2%
Ireland 21.2% 6.2% 13.6%

Source: StatCounter                                                                                                                      – Other individual countries available at:

StatCounter’s ( core business is to provide companies, agencies, bloggers, self-employed and charities with the data to measure activity on their website, blog or forum. Key features include a free option, ease of use, independence and ability to view individual visitors in real time.

StatCounter Global Stats data is based on over 15 billion page views per month to over three million websites. Further information:

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