Who is Still Using Windows XP, and Why?

The launch of Windows 8 is on the horizon, releasing later this year. Microsoft assures us the user experience with their new OS will be better than ever before, however; would it surprise you to learn that more than 3 out of every 10 PC users are still using Windows XP, an OS that is a full decade old? It’s true, and here’s why.

The Prodigal Software

Following in the footsteps of Windows 98 and 2000, which each had their share of issues, XP was hailed as being the most stable and easy-to-use product Microsoft had put out since Windows 95. In the five years between XP’s release and Vista’s, it lived up to its hype through regular and convenient software updates.
If It Ain’t Broke…

As both home and business users became used to XP, it became less and less likely that any significant improvements could be made with new software. This was reflected in the widespread release of office technology that was compatible with XP. The more invested corporations and individuals alike became in its use, the harder it would be to convince anyone a shift was worthwhile.

Vista Backlash

The only criticisms many had for XP were security issues. Microsoft promised a serious security upgrade with Vista, and for the most part, they delivered. But after word got out about the incorporation of intrusive DRM technologies, the higher system requirements, and the incompatibility issues with pre-Vista hardware and software, adoption was extremely reluctant. Many never “upgraded” at all, and for those that did, it was once bitten, twice shy.
Time to Change

Windows 7 resolves nearly all of the problems with Vista, but there’s a lot of work to be done to convince XP users to make the switch. XP has become expensive to maintain compared with upgrading to 7, however, and this may be the driving force behind a shift in the market. Another factor will be Microsoft’s removal of support for XP, including security updates and hotfixes, in April 2014. Anyone who relies on a computer knows how important it is to stay current when it comes to potential security problems.

In the tech world, you can’t stay behind for long, and many who mistrust Windows 7 will likely change their tune once they give it a shot. Hopefully the transition will be more painless than it has in the past!


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