Microsoft Sells 40 Million Windows 8 Licenses in First Month

Subject: General Tech | November 28, 2012 - 12:33 PM |
Tagged: windows 8, windows, upgrades, microsoft

Analysts and computer enthusiasts have been predicting the success (or demise) of Microsoft’s latest Windows 8 operating system for some time now. Fortunately, we finally have some rough sales numbers from the Redmond-based software company to go off of. In short, despite the controversial nature of the operating system Microsoft has a winner on its hands.

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As the first month of Windows 8’s retail availability came to a close, Microsoft’s Tami Reller announced that the company has sold 40 million licenses so far. The company did not specify how those licenses broke down as far as the SKU and how many were OEM/Upgrade/Retail copies. It is also unclear whether the free Windows 8 Pro keys the company accidentally gave out were included in the number (hehe).

One other interesting tidbit that Microsoft did share was that the Windows Store has seen several apps that have made more than $25,000 with the developer and Microsoft doing an 80/20-percent split of the revenue.

As a point of comparison, Windows 7 sold 60 million copes over a two month period, so it will be interesting to see if Windows 8 will surpass that 60 million mark at the end of next month or not. Right now, it is looking promising.There are quite a few things to be wary of in the new operating system, but there is also a lot of under-the-hood performance tweaks that are worth putting up with the other changes for. It will be interesting to see where the OS goes from here and how it is received on the enterprise side of things.

Source: Microsoft

November 28, 2012 | 02:05 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

How much did they make on those that were sold though? The first few days after release MS were practical giving window 8 away. I got my copy for €14.99 ( suppose upgrade from new PC)even though my PC was a 8 month old home built.

November 28, 2012 | 02:13 PM - Posted by Tim Verry

I'm not sure, they did not release how much money they've made yet or break out which versions sold X amount. :(. i bet a lot of those are the cheap 14.99 and $40 upgrades though.

November 28, 2012 | 02:06 PM - Posted by Anonymous Coward (not verified)

No, Tim, no. Bad journalist, bad!

While Microsoft is clearly trying to mislead, and in a strictly technical sense pcper didn't tell a lie, this whole story reeks of the idea that 40 million copies of Win8 somehow "sold".

What happened is that 40 million licenses were ordered in bulk by OEMs, to be put on computers that may or may not be even in stores yet.

Don't help Microsoft astroturf. Either actual sales numbers with breakdown, or GTFO. The time to report on Win8 sales and call it an initial success or failure will be at the next earnings call, probably sometime in february/march.

November 28, 2012 | 02:18 PM - Posted by Tim Verry

Well, it's true that we don't know how many of those 40 million licenses are actually in the hands of consumers. I am interested in seeing the breakout, especially of the number of copies purchased at retail or online (system builder and upgrade stuff) by people actually buying it to use it instead of just OEMs. OTOH it's logical that those licenses will eventually be put to work on hardware and sold to consumers. I guess we'll have to wait for the numbers from the OEMs to know that though.


Still it's an interesting rough estimation of how it's doing out of the starting gate in the sense that the numbers aren't great but it's not a failure at launch.

November 29, 2012 | 04:22 AM - Posted by Anonymous Coward (not verified)

You have a point, but I'm not convinced Windows 8 isn't bombing. Let's put it this way, are you running Windows 8, or planning on running it soon? Do you know anyone who is?

Now let's take a step back. Did you run Windows 7 when it came out? Do you know anyone who did? I bet you ran the Windows 7 beta as well, didn't you?

People like you, the pcper staff, me and your other readers are canaries in the coal mine.

November 28, 2012 | 02:25 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Does it matter? To Microsoft, a sale is when a license is put on a computer, not when a computer is sold to a customer. All Microsoft cares about is when it gets paid.

November 29, 2012 | 04:25 AM - Posted by Anonymous Coward (not verified)

Put it this way. Microsoft spent 1.5 Billion on Windows 8 promotion so far. If they really did "sell" 40 million copies so far, how much did they spend on promotion per copy?

Answer: $37.50

How much does Windows 8 cost again?

November 28, 2012 | 06:46 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

40 million licenses mostly sitting on dust covered servers in the basements of PC OEMs! Let's wait for the real independent results to come out, and see what a pipe dream that App Store, bloat ware, spam bot Metro/modern UI really is! My third party OEM PC will not be a part of M$ walled garden of crappy delites!

November 28, 2012 | 09:02 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

so typical for microsoft and industry to report a sales number and state success. since the software must be attached to the hardware- all enterprise boxes and laptops must have win 8 now- when a lot of enterprise are still converting to win 7

and even then - the famous microsoft double dip takes affect since enterprise must use the enterprise sku and not the retail one that came with the machine

if you remove the enterprise licensee's purchases of computers from the numbers- the actual sales drop pretty substantially

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