In January of 2020, Microsoft officially ended support for its long-standing operating system, Windows 7. However, many users are still utilizing the software even in 2021. The question remains, What percentage of people still use Windows 7?
According to Netmarketshare, a website that tracks the market share of operating systems, as of March 2021, Windows 7 still holds 15.84% of the market share globally. This means that despite Microsoft ending support for the OS, almost one in six computer users are still running on it.
This number may come as a surprise to some, as Windows 7 is now over a decade old and has already been replaced by two newer versions, Windows 8 and 10. However, some users have been reluctant to upgrade. There are various reasons for this, such as the cost of acquiring a new operating system, concerns about compatibility issues, and the familiarity and ease of use of Windows 7.
Despite this, many technology experts still advise users to upgrade to a newer version. Going without support means that a user's computer will no longer receive updates or patches, leaving it more vulnerable to viruses, malware, and other security threats. Furthermore, newer software is increasingly being designed for Windows 10, making it difficult for Windows 7 users to access the latest programs.
It's also worth noting that businesses are among the largest users of Windows 7. A survey by security firm Bitdefender found that as of 2020, 43% of small businesses were still using the operating system. This is particularly concerning, as a cyberattack on a business with out-of-date software could have disastrous consequences.
So what should users still on Windows 7 do? The simplest solution is to upgrade to Windows 10, which has been well-received since its release in 2015. The process can be done via Microsoft's website, and while it may mean a cost upfront, it will guarantee continued support and reduce vulnerability to cyberattacks.
Ultimately, the percentage of people still using Windows 7 continues to decrease each year. However, until the number reaches zero, those who have not yet upgraded are putting themselves at risk. Everyone should prioritize their computer's security by upgrading to a newer operating system, and it's never too late to make the switch.