Skip to main content

From Hololens to home office, over a billion devices now run Windows 10

Microsoft has revealed that there are now over one billion devices using Windows 10 around the world. That includes over 80,000 laptop models and configurations from over 1,000 manufacturers, according to the Redmond giant.

The announcement underlines Microsoft’s desktop operating system dominance in terms of sheer numbers. Its closest rival, Apple’s MacOS, represents around 110 million devices, according to Apple analyst Neil Cybart. That suggests Windows 10 alone has ten times the market share of MacOS, putting it in a truly authoritative position.

The news comes two months after Microsoft formally ended support for Windows 7. While there have been concerns over users holding out and refusing to change to more modern versions of Windows, Microsoft will likely be pleased to have so many users running Windows 10. If you still haven’t switched up to the latest version of Windows, now’s the time to do it — our guide will take you through the upgrade process (and you can even get Windows 10 for free). Worried? You can always make Windows 10 look like Windows 7 if you really want to.

The sheer number of machines running Windows 10 runs the gamut, from high-powered desktop computers to 2-in-1 devices to foldable phones, and everything in between. Microsoft has been experimenting with the future of Windows in recent years in an attempt to tailor Windows 10 to all these devices, with varying levels of success.

Windows 10’s S Mode, for example, restricts users to apps from the Windows Store, a feature we are not particularly fond of. Windows 10X, meanwhile, has two different File Explorers, which is inconsistent at best and downright confusing at worst.

Still, the upcoming launches of the Surface Neo and Surface Duo point to exciting times ahead for the Windows faithful. With Microsoft willing to take a risk and dive into the world of foldable devices, we could see a new chapter unfold for the computing stalwart. We’re still in the early days, but the Surface Neo felt exciting and futuristic when we tried it out (although the required support for almost any kind of app could end up being its Achilles’ heel).

There’s no doubt there are a lot of unanswered questions about the future of Windows 10. But with so many devices running Microsoft’s long-lived operating system, the Redmond firm is unlikely to be too concerned.

Editors' Recommendations

Alex Blake
In ancient times, people like Alex would have been shunned for their nerdy ways and strange opinions on cheese. Today, he…
Windows 11 might pull ahead of Windows 10 in one key way
Windows 11 and Windows 10 operating system logos are displayed on laptop screens.

Windows 11 has been around for nearly a year, but the debate on how it stands up against Windows 10 is still going strong. That's why custom computer builder Puget Systems revisited that very topic, with the results finding that Windows 11 might pull ahead of Windows 10 in one key area.

This one key area involves content creation, and Puget Systems detailed that in several tests,

Read more
More PCs are running Windows XP than Windows 11
Person sitting and using an HP computer with Windows 11.

Even though Microsoft is heavily promoting its latest Windows 11 platform, adoption of the operating system has largely hit a roadblock. The latest market research suggests that Windows 11 is running on just 1.44% of all PCs on the market today, placing the latest OS behind older, legacy platforms like Windows XP and Windows 7.

For comparison, asset manager software provider Lansweeper's market data revealed that older, legacy operating systems, such as Windows XP and Windows 7, command a larger share of the market than Windows 11.

Read more
Microsoft adds message on unsupported PCs running Windows 11
Windows 11 device sitting on a stool.

With the right tweaks, it has always been possible to run Windows 11 on devices that do not meet minimum specs, but Microsoft is now taking this practice more seriously. Just a month after banner messages first appeared for select Windows Insiders running the operating system on unsupported PCs, Microsoft is now pushing bigger warning messages out to Windows Insiders regarding this matter.

Reportedly, the latest Windows Insider Beta and Release Preview builds of Windows 11 add a watermark to the desktop reading: System requirements not met, go to settings to learn more. This latest Microsoft move has been confirmed by multiple Twitter users, one of which shared the screenshot below. Microsoft didn't confirm the rollout of the messaging in any changelogs, but Digital Trends did notice it on one of our unsupported systems.

Read more