Just seven weeks before Windows 8 will be released by Microsoft, market research firm Net Applications has noted that Windows 7 is now more popular than Windows XP. According to previous data just two years ago, Windows 7 was used by approximately eighteen percent of the market while nearly 62 percent continued to use Windows XP at work and in the office. By the end of August 2012, Windows 7 is now being used by nearly 43 percent of the market while Windows XP is still holding fairly strong at 42.5 percent. As a pre-release preview, Windows 8 is being used by approximately a quarter of a percent of the market, but that figure should change significantly during late October.
As Windows 7 rose in popularity, Windows Vista continued to sink and bleed market share due to constant issues with performance, privacy and security. Over the past two years, Vista has fallen from about fourteen percent market share to just over six percent. In addition, the total market share of Mac OS X versions 10.4 through 10.8 are now outpacing Windows Vista.
Regarding share by desktop, Windows users make up approximately 92 percent of the market while Mac users come in at seven percent and Linux users make up the remaining one percent. Internet Explorer is still the most widely used browser on desktops with over half of the market, but Google and Mozilla are attracting about one fifth of the market each with Chrome and Firefox.
Regarding operating system share by mobile devices, Apple is the champ in this category with nearly two thirds of the market. Android users make up a little more than a fifth of the market and the remaining thirteen percent include devices like BlackBerry phones, Windows phones and the Kindle. Regarding browser share with mobile devices, Safari is used by approximately 66 percent of the market and Android is around twenty percent. Other popular mobile borwsers include Opera Mini, BlackBerry and Chrome.