Windows 7 has taken the majority of the global operating system market for the first time, according to figures from web analytics company StatCounter.
Microsoft's latest operating system, till the impending arrival of Windows 8, Windows 7 had 50.2 per cent of the OS market for the month of June, while Windows XP — the second most popular OS — trailed behind at 29.9 per cent of the world's PCs, the figures showed.
Figures suggest Windows 7 is now on the majority of all PCs.
Windows 7 was launched close to three years ago, in October 2009, but, despite receiving a warmer reception than its predecessor Vista, it's been slow to achieve the level of popularity enjoyed by XP. Many businesses have chosen to cling onto the legacy decade-old operating system, due to its stability, for reasons of application stability or simply to avoid an upgrade to Vista.
The stats will likely bring a sigh of relief for Microsoft: it's set to end support for Windows XP in April 2014, and has warned businesses and schools to upgrade to Windows 7 as soon as possible.
But it goes without saying, "beware the math". Fellow market share analytics company Net Applications paints a similar, but slightly different, picture of the numbers, using its own methodology.
Meanwhile, the gap is converging, but the two operating systems have yet to cross paths.
According to Net Applications, Windows XP still has 43.6 per cent of the market share, while Windows 7 has 41.6 per cent, according to the rival firm. The trend line shows an approximate 1 per cent rise per month for Windows 7, and around the same in decline for Windows XP.
At this rate, it is fair to assume by Net Applications' figures that, by the time Windows 8 is released into the wild this fall, the positions of the old and new operating systems will be reversed.