Tag Archives: Windows

Shifts Ahead in the Windows Installed Base (TUPdate)

Shifts Ahead in the Windows Installed Base – Dan Ness, November 3, 2016

Any large installed base doesn’t always stay that way. Fickle customers continue experimenting and switching between platforms and ecosystems. Microsoft continues to meet challenges from Apple, Google, and countless others, as users continue their quest for what they see as the best. Despite the size and breadth of the installed base, Microsoft’s customers for certain products and services are not as average as may be expected.

Actively Used Windows Devices by Type

Understanding just how large the Windows installed base is begins with some basic measurements. How many adults use Windows OS devices, and which types of devices dominate?metafacts-metafaqs-mq0674-2016-11-03_12-22-31

Most American adults use a Windows device, with 170.4 million using some type of key connected device. This means more than three-quarters (78%) of American adults use any combination of one or more Windows PCs, Smartphones or Tablets.

This level of dominance appears to spell strong security for Microsoft. It’s important to look one level more deeply – to the types of devices being actively used which are and aren’t using Windows.

Another 47.8 million adults are actively using a connected device using any other operating system than Windows. This defines a substantial portion of the market outside of Microsoft’s Windows ecosystem.

Microsoft Windows’s strongest domain is on Desktop and Notebook PCs. 166.3 million adults actively use a Windows PC, while 27.6 million only use a PC (or Mac) that doesn’t run Windows.

When it comes to Smartphones, Microsoft Windows hasn’t made a substantial lasting presence. Of the 170.6 million adults using a Smartphone, only 4.5 million use a Windows Smartphone.

Tablets have been stronger for Microsoft, especially with its relatively recent release of the Microsoft Surface line. Of the 132.9 million US adults who regularly use a Tablet, 25.6 million run Windows.

Size of the Active PC Installed Base

How many adults use PCs, and which operating systems dominate?metafacts-metafaqs-mq0675-2016-11-02_12-54-40

PCs continue to dominate the collection of connected devices in active use. 193.9 million adult Americans use a Windows, Mac or Google Chrome OS PC. There are connected adults who don’t use a PC, and these number 24.3 million.

The lion’s share of adults actively use PCs running Microsoft Windows. 166.3 million adults actively use a Windows PC, while 27.6 million only use an Apple Mac or Chromebook.

Apple has a much smaller share of adults who use one of their Macs or MacBooks. 44.4 million adults actively use an Apple PC. There is an overlap of 24.2 million adults, meaning that over half of Apple MacOS users also actively use a Windows PC. Looked at from Microsoft’s perspective, only 15% of Windows users actively use an Apple PC.

Google’s Chrome OS PCs have a nominal share. 3.1 million adults actively use a Google OS PC.

Size of the Active Smartphone Installed Base

How many adults use Smartphones, and which operating systems dominate?metafacts-metafaqs-mq0676-2016-11-03_10-10-23

170.7 million adult Americans use a Smartphone, using Google Android, Apple, Windows or any other OS. At 78% of connected adults, this penetration is very high.

Another 47.5 million use a connected device other than a Smartphone. We expect most these holdouts, many of whom are using Basic feature phones, to eventually migrate to a Smartphone, if begrudgingly.

However, the majority of new Smartphone sales will be into a replacement market, as subscribers update their handsets.

Google Android leads now in Smartphones. With 80.8 million adults million adults actively use a Google Android Smartphone, this is slightly higher than Apple’s 77.8 million adult iPhone users. Microsoft Windows phones, however, are only in the hands of 4.5 million connected adults.

Size of the Active Tablet Installed Base

132.9 million adults are using at least one Tablet, leaving 85.3 million connected adults not actively using one.metafacts-metafaqs-mq0677-2016-11-03_10-47-14

Apple’s iPad has the largest share of the installed base, with 63 million active users. Apple’s share, however, has been shrinking with broader acceptance of increasingly sophisticated and more heavily marketed tables using Android and Windows.

With 36 million Android Tablet users, Google has a strong base, even if well behind Apple’s.

Windows, with 25.6 million users, lags behind both leaders. However, considering that Windows Surface tablets were released starting in 2012, expanding to this size base is impressive.

The Shifting Desktop PC OS Share

The current installed base of Desktop PCs is dominated by Microsoft Windows.metafacts-metafaqs-mq0678-2016-11-03_12-13-15

Apple has started to make inroads with its Macs. Among the newest Desktop PCs in the installed based, , Apple’s share is effectively one-in-five, at 21%. This is stronger than Apple Macs in the installed base which were acquired in 2015, where Apple’s share is one-in-six, at 17%.

The Shifting Notebook PC OS Share

The current installed base of Notebook PCs continues to be dominated by Microsoft Windows. Apple has gained a substantial share, with nearly one-quarter (24%) of the installed base.metafacts-metafaqs-mq0679-2016-11-03_12-18-03

Historically, Apple has been very strong among younger adults, especially students. In fact, while 77% of adult students use some type of Windows PC, this is a smaller share than the average adult. At the same time, one-third (33%) of students use at least one type of Apple Desktop or Notebook, a share substantially higher than the national rate of 23%.

Google’s Chromebooks, although have achieved broad media attention, are only being actively used by very few users. Among adults using Notebooks acquired in the first half of 2016, Google’s share is 3%, and 4% for those acquired in 2015.

The Shifting Smartphone OS Share

Microsoft only has a sliver of the Smartphone market. The current installed base of Smartphones in the US is dominated by Google (Android) and Apple (iOS).metafacts-metafaqs-mq0680-2016-11-03_11-40-58

In the total active installed base, Google has a nearly-identical share to Apple.

Looking more deeply into which OS dominates newer phones in the US, Google has the largest share. Just over half – 55% – of Smartphones acquired in the first half of 2016 are using Google Android. That’s up from half (50%) of Smartphones acquired in 2015, and even lower shares in older Smartphones.

Windows Smartphones are ranked 3rd, with a nominal share that’s been declining.

The Shifting Tablet OS Share

Microsoft Windows has a fresher share of the installed base of actively used tablets than ever before. Despite that, Windows tablets are ranked 3rd behind Apple iOS and Google Android.metafacts-metafaqs-mq0681-2016-11-03_11-52-08

Apple’s iPad is the darling of Tablets, currently with the dominant share of the installed base of actively used tablets in the US.

However, Apple’s dominance has been challenged by both Microsoft and Google Android tablets. Apple’s share is still dominant among recently-acquired Tablets, and yet the trend isn’t favorable. Apple has its largest share among older tablets actively used in the installed base.

Google Android & Chrome OS tablets have a share growing towards Apple’s, and are a substantial threat to both Microsoft and Apple.

Looking Ahead

We’ve found predictive power in looking at tech purchase plans in the context of what they are already using. Among other factors, habit and inertia are strong among many consumers.metafacts-metafaqs-mq0682-2016-11-03_13-53-46

Google has some positive prospects. Consumers who have been avoiding Google devices make up the strongest segment planning to buy a Chromebook, and are relatively strong for Android Tablets and Smartwatches. It’s not surprising that another strong segment for Chromebooks are those avid tech device collectors who have all 3 major OS families – Windows, Apple, and Google.

Plans for Apple products, however, aren’t showing strong growth prospects outside of Apple’s base. Apple avoiders are one of the smallest segments with plans to buy an Apple iPad, iPhone, or Apple Watch. There is home from the accumulators – those active consumers who are using all three OS.

Purchase plans for Microsoft Windows Smartphones are coming from a mixture of the converted and departed. Nearly as many are Google avoiders as have all 3 OS. Also Windows-only devotees have plans to stay within the fold for their next Smartphone.

Looking ahead, Microsoft’s recent desktop PC announcement with the Surface Studio was received favorably by many tech reporters and analysts. Although most likely to be bought by high-end creatives, technology-laden products like this can have a halo effect on franchises like Windows, lending them an advanced aura. This sizzle, in turn, can help stem the tide of users who have been switching away from Windows.

About this TUPdate

This TUPdate includes a complimentary brief summary of recent MetaFacts TUP (Technology User Profile) research results. These results are based on the most-recent results of the MetaFacts Technology User Profile 2016 survey, its 34th wave, with 7,334 respondents (US). Trend information is based on prior waves. For more information about MetaFacts and subscribing to TUP, please contact MetaFacts.


Current TUP subscribers can tap into any of the following TUP information used for this analysis or for even deeper analysis.

The TUP 2016 Devices Chapter details device combinations, as well as device primacy, OS Ecosystems, brand footprint, and other key analysis points.

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Filed under Basic cell phones, Desktops, Market Sizing, Mobile Phones, Multiple Devices, Notebooks, Smartphones, Statistics, Tablets, Tech Market, TUP 2016, TUPdate

Who are the Apple-only users? (MetaFAQs)

In a world dominated by Microsoft Windows PCs, it can take conscious effort to only use Apple Macs. Also, with an abundance of Google Android and Windows tablets available from many companies, it can take a special loyalty to choose an iPad and also a Mac. Furthermore, with the widest assortment of Smartphones being from anyone but Apple, it’s a further statement of preference and choice to have only Apple devices.

One in eight (13%) of adults with any connected device have in fact made these choices, and are only using Apple Smartphones, Tablets, or PCs, assiduously avoiding Windows or Google Android or Chrome OS devices.metafacts-metafaqs-mq0093-2016-10-23_12-27-02

Who are these Apple-only users? Are they only the socioeconomically elite? Well, yes and no. They do have higher incomes than the average American.

Among adults with only Apple devices, 27% have household incomes of $100,000 or more. This is and index of 137 above the national average for Connected Adults.

This is based on our most recent research among 7,336 US adults as part of the Technology User Profile (TUP) 2016 survey.

This MetaFAQs research result addresses one of the many questions profiling active technology users.

Many other related answers are part of the full TUP service, available to paid subscribers. The TUP chapter with substantial information about Apple-Only users is the TUP 2016 Devices Chapter. Other TUP chapters detail iPhones, iPads, Macs, and the overall brand footprint.

These MetaFAQs are brought to you by MetaFacts, based on research results from their most-recent wave of Technology User Profile (TUP).

For more information about MetaFacts and subscribing to TUP, please contact MetaFacts.

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Filed under Demographics & Econographics, Desktops, Devices, Households, Market Research, MetaFAQs, Mobile Phones, Multiple Devices, Notebooks, Operating systems, Smartphones, Tablets, TUP 2016

Which employees are using Windows 7 PCs? (MetaFAQs)

Employers vary considerably in how quickly they adopt new operating systems for their employee’s computers.

With Microsoft’s massive efforts to upgrade their installed base to Windows 10, which employees are using Windows 7?

Four in ten (40%) of employees working for employers with 1,000 or more employees are using Windows 7. By comparison, the more-nimble smaller and medium-size organizations only have one-fourth of their PC-using employees with Windows 7.mq0082-2016-09-29_12-19

Larger organizations have consistently been laggards in adopting new information technology products of nearly all kinds. There are many good justifications, from spending controls, security concerns, or training issues. Often, organizations of all sizes have specific in-house or custom applications that needs to work flawlessly on newer operating systems.

Looking deeper into our TUP research results, we’ve found several notable industries which are further along in moving beyond Windows 7 and adopting Windows 10 or even moving to Apple Macs.These pioneers are finding ways to use newer technology for their competitive advantage.

We expect larger organizations as a whole to continue with their careful, if slower, adoption of newest technology.

About this MetaFAQ

In addition to profiling the spending, demographics, activities, and devices of these employees, many other related answers are part of the TUP service, available to paid subscribers.One section of TUP 2016 in particular includes extensive results about employees and the technology they use – the TUP 2016 Work/Self-Employed PCs section. This is part of the TUP 2016 PC Chapter, one of more than a dozen chapters in the entire TUP 2016 study.

These MetaFAQs are brought to you by MetaFacts, based on research results from the most-recent wave of Technology User Profile (TUP).

For more information about MetaFacts and subscribing to TUP, please contact MetaFacts.

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Filed under Convertibles, Desktops, Market Research, MetaFAQs, Notebooks, Operating systems, TUP 2016

Apple’s Girds Up Its Legs With Handoff

A table is more stable when each leg is strong and when each leg supports the others. In Apple’s most recent operating system upgrade, the Handoff feature stands to capitalize on Apple’s strengths, to stem defections, and possibly to attract new customers.

Apple gets it – to focus on technology users and what users do – and not only on the devices themselves. By making the interaction between key devices fluid, users will be more likely to choose future devices which interoperate instead of buying separate islands.Handoff questions-MetaFacts

Also, while many companies have tried to reduce customer defection by effectively padlocking the exit doors, even skirting consumer protection laws and the ire of the FTC, it’s more positive long-term to provide customers reasons to stay. While many customers recognize their choices will restrict them to a walled garden, they may choose to stay longer provided the fruits are as promised.

Many users are juggling multiple products. Over half – 55% – of Connected Adults actively use four or more devices. This spans PCs, Tablets, Smarpthones, e-Book Readers, and other Connected Devices. Any moves to integrate the user’s experience in a more seamless way will increase the chances that users will choose to stay within a given ecosystem, such as Apple’s.

Handoff promises to let users smoothly juggle their Apple devices in the middle of an activity. For example, when a call or message arrives on a user’s iPhone, they can choose to take the call on their nearby iPad or Mac.

At the current time, 38% of Connected Adults have at least one of the three key Apple devices: an iPhone, iPad, or Mac. However, Apple has a cliff to climb, since 63% of these Apple customers use only one type of these devices.Apple Handoff Size Funnel-MetaFacts

So, at most, today only 37% of Apple’s customers can benefit from Handoff features because they have at least two of the three Apple devices. The actual number is smaller since the Handoff’s full capability will only be available to those with devices which can run the most current operating system.

Apple’s footprint is split by iPhone users and iPad users, at 24% and 20% of Connected Adults, respectively. These two groups overlap minimally. Only 26% of Apple’s customers use both an iPhone and iPad.

Which direction are consumers likely to head? They’ve told us. Among iPhone users, more of those planning to buy a Tablet plan to get an Apple iPad. Among iPad users, more of those planning to buy a Smartphone are planning to buy an iPhone. This bodes well for Apple.

While Microsoft, Google, and the affected competitors could collaborate a coordinated response with their own responses, this will require substantial technical and business cooperation. Continuity capabilities will most likely first come from individual apps. For example, communication apps such as Viber have already extended their capabilities to simultaneously continue conversations across multiple platforms.
Bob Dance - MetaFacts
Consumers have proven they are willing to juggling multiple devices. In doing what MetaFacts calls the BOB Dance, they will choose the devices which are best-suited to a particular tasks, the Best Of Breed (BOB). Then, over time, they opt towards fewer devices and accepting a one-fits-all approach even if the experience is substandard. Witness the death of the everyday digital camera, quickly replaced by Smartphones well before image quality met that of inexpensive cameras.

More-encompassing approaches such as the integration promised by Apple Handoff may herald the era of Fluid Devices, where the user can smoothly and flexibly choose to use their “best” device at the moment that best suits them.

The consumer’s perennial focus on convenience means that Apple’s Handoff capabilities will strengthen loyalty among the Apple-faithful and will slowly increase their footprint among those with at least one Apple device. More importantly to Apple, the heightened conveniences will help delay loss of Apple customers to the Google or Microsoft world.


These results are based on the most recent wave of Technology User Profile, the TUP 2014 edition. The large-scale survey is in its 32nd continuous year, documenting and detailing the full scope of technology adoption and use. In addition to detailing the many devices adults use to connect and sizing targeted market segments, the survey-based research details what people do with their devices. It reports which activities adults primarily use with which device. For example, TUP reports which market segments use their Smartphones or Desktops as their primary communication device, as well as which devices are primarily for entertainment, shopping, social networking, and other types of activities.

Further results and datasets are available to TUP subscribers, including the full details on these technology users: which devices they intend to buy, which other devices they already actively use, the activities they’re doing and which device they do them with, their complete demographic profile, their tech spending, wearable technology, and more.
Technology companies who want to know more about retail or online shoppers, Smartphone users, or about their current or future customers can contact MetaFacts to learn how to subscribe to the rich resources of Technology User Profile.

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Which buyers are bucking the recession with tech shopping plans? Where is the consumer demand?

Also see another recent TUPdate: Printing Mobile Phone Photos: The New Frontier

Which buyers are bucking the recession with tech shopping plans?

A TUPdate by Dan Ness, Principal Analyst, MetaFacts

Recession or not, what people around the world are hungering for—and apparently planning to shell out money for—is HDTVs. In the 27th annual Technology User Profile survey, HDTVs were on the top of the wish list in 14 of 16 countries among 30,889 respondents surveyed about 76 different technology products and services. Surprisingly, this HDTV interest reached uniformly across gender and included both the younger and older, unlike operating systems upgrades such as Microsoft’s Windows 7 or Apple’s Snow Leopard.

But much as they want their MTV in hi-def (or SunTV in India or Sky World News in the UK), they also put entirely practical products high on their lists, and these sometimes even stole priority from HDTVs.

The intensity of the desire for HDTVs varied, peaking in the developing nations. Globally, an average of 27 percent of online PC adults were making plans that include an HDTV, but the percentage rose to 53 percent in Brazil, and was 40 percent among China’s Urbanites, India’s Urbanites, and Russia, and 39 percent of Mexico’s Urbanites. On the other hand, only 12 percent of the Dutch and 16 percent of the Japanese were making such plans, indicating a saturated market or jaded TV watchers.

The two countries where HDTVs did not top the list were China and India. In China, the number one choice was those wireless keyboard-mouse combos. These practical devices were desired by 43 percent of the respondents, pushing HDTVs (which 40 percent planned to purchase) into second place. In India, meanwhile, everyone seemed to be planning to buy everything, pushing HDTVs (40 percent) into sixth place, behind those ubiquitous wireless keyboard/mouse combos (49 percent), digital camcorders with memory cards (42 percent), wireless mice by themselves (42 percent), wireless keyboards by themselves (41 percent), and additional RAM for their long-suffering PCs (40 percent).

The interest in upgrading operating system software varied surprisingly by gender/age group. In percentage terms, the group with the strongest interest is males age 18 to 24. However, looking more deeply, this group’s much stronger interest in so many other tech product outweighs these plans so an operating system upgrade is ranked 28th among these youngsters and ranked 6th among males 55+ and 12th among males 45 to 54.

In case you were wondering, U.S. respondents did list HDTVs as numero uno, but still only 19 percent wanted one. Number two on the list was additional RAM (14 percent), third was a digital camcorder with a memory card (13 percent), fourth was that wireless keyboard/mouse combo (12 percent) while fifth was their very own DVR/PVR digital/personal video recorder (12 percent). This may be so they can time-shift and not have to watch TV commercials.

Speaking of DVRs/PVRs, which give the users additional control over their entertainment, that device was number two on the list in Australia, Germany, England, and Japan, number three in Italy, and number four in the Netherlands and Spain. Globally, it was ranked number 8.

The wild card among products appeared to be the arguably obsolete analog camcorder. Globally, only 9 percent of respondents admitted to planning to buy one, but the rate shot to 31 percent in China, 28 percent in India, and 20 percent in Saudi Arabia. On the other extreme, demand amounted to only 1 percent in the Netherlands and Japan.

About this TUPdate

MetaFacts releases ongoing research on the market shifts and profiles for Windows Vista, Mobile PCs, Workplace PCs, Home PCs, Moms and Dads, Web Creators, Broadband, and many other technology industry topics. These TUPdates are short analytical articles in a series of specific topics utilizing the Technology User Profile Annual Edition study, which reveals the changing patterns of technology adoption around the world. Interested technology professionals can sign up at http://technologyuser.com/contact/ for complimentary TUPdates – periodic snapshots of technology markets.

About MetaFacts

MetaFacts, Inc. is a national market research firm focusing exclusively on the technology industries. MetaFacts’ Technology User Profile survey is the longest-running, large-scale comprehensive study of its kind, conducted continuously since 1983, the year before Apple released the Apple Macintosh. The detailed results are widely recognized as a primary market sizing and segmentation resource for leading companies providing consumer-oriented technology products and services, such as PCs, printers, software applications, peripherals, consumer electronics, mobile computing, and related services and products. For more information about the syndicated research service, publications and datasets, contact MetaFacts at 1-760-635-4300.

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Filed under Consumer research, Market Research, TUP 2009, TUPdate