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Windows 8 and 8.1 app downloads up nearly 40 percent since June

Surprise surprise! Despite the fact that many have resisted the move from Windows XP or Windows 7 to Windows 8/8.1, downloads from the Windows Store to machines running Windows 8 or 8.1 have reportedly risen by 38.56 percent since June. That’s a gap of just four months.

Here’s a breakdown. For the entire month of October, 51,152,284 apps were downloaded to Windows 8 and Window 8.1 machines. Of that number, 49,796,691 were free apps, while 1,355,593 were apps people paid for. In June, a total of 36,916,800 apps were downloaded. Of those, 35,880,344 were free, while 1,036,456 were paid. So not only are app downloads on the rise as of late, but more downloads with price tags attached are being snagged from the Windows Store as well.

The spike in Windows 8 and 8.1 app downloads may be as result of the simple fact that Windows 8.1 was just released last month. Considering the fact that Windows 8.1 was just launched, it’s not unreasonable to expect that many of those who now own PCs that run Windows 8.1 are brand new to the Windows 8 environment. In their efforts to familiarize themselves with the new OS, many users could simply be downloading apps to configure their new machines the way they want to.

It would be interesting to stack up app download numbers from Windows 8.1 and Mac OS X Mavericks side by side, considering that each was released just days apart. Windows 8.1 was released on October 17, while Apple took the leash off Mavericks on October 22, just five days later. The former was free, but only to Windows 8 users, while the latter was free of charge to anyone who met the minimum system requirements.