|Will Windows 8 sales speed up|
Microsoft's new Window 8 operating system got off to a slow start in its first month of sales despite heavy marketing, new reports say.
A report from the research firm NPD Group says sales of Windows devices during the software's the first four weeks declined 21 percent compared with the same period last year.
The new operating system has also had a slower start than Windows 7, capturing just 58 percent of Windows device sales in its first four weeks, NPD said. Windows 7 took 83 percent in its debut.
“After just four weeks on the market, it’s still early to place blame on Windows 8 for the ongoing weakness in the PC market,” Stephen Baker, vice president of industry analysis at NPD, said in a release on the report. “We still have the whole holiday selling season ahead of us, but clearly Windows 8 did not prove to be the impetus for a sales turnaround some had hoped for.”
Other statistics also point to a rocky start.
The research firm StatCounter Global Statistics said Windows 8 picked up only 1.31 percent of global Internet usage in its first month.
That number goes up against 4.93 percent achieved by Windows 7 at its start.
"Microsoft has reported license sales of 40 million for Windows 8; however this has not yet translated into significant usage figures. This may be due to sales to manufacturers rather than to end users so Windows 8 may well get a boost over the December holiday buying season," Aodhan Cullen, CEO of StatCounter, said in a statement.
Windows 8 includes features aimed at competing better with mobile devices such as the iPad and tablets using Google's Android operating system.
It has been pushed by both Microsoft and PC makers such as Hewlett-Packard that are pinning their hopes on it.
And very important, its release coincides with the launch of various PC and tablets models that use it, including, importantly, the new Microsoft-branded Surface tablet.
The sluggish first month is certainly due to in part to slowed PC sales in general as consumers spend their computing dollars on already proven devices such as the Apple iPad and Amazon.com's Kindle Fire.
That competition that has become even fiercer with the recent introduction of new models of both tablets, as well as Android devices such as the Google Nexus tablet.
And as noted by both reports, the rest of the holiday season awaits.
The second month of Windows 8 sales, leading up to Christmas, will be another test for the software.
(C) 2012 by Story Crest Press.