Last week Microsoft unveiled their latest momentum numbers for Windows 10 and announced that the nearly 10-month old operating system is now running on 300 million active devices.

Early on Microsoft announced an ambitious goal of having Windows 10 installed on 1 billion devices within 2-3 years of the operating systems release.

Since its release back on 29 July 2015, we have received periodic momentum updates from Microsoft and with last weeks updated number of active users let’s take a look and see how that effort is progressing.

Here is a summary of the momentum numbers announced by Microsoft since the release of Windows 10:

  • 26 August 2015 – 75 million devices
  • 06 October 2015 – 110 million devices
  • 04 January 2016 – 200 million devices
  • 30 March 2016 – 270 million devices
  • 05 May 2016 – 300 million devices

Now using those dates lets determine the average daily install/active user rate between each new set of momentum numbers.

Note: Microsoft considers a device as active if it has been used in the previous 30 days and the first momentum numbers to reflect that count was in January 2016.

  • 29 July 2015 to 29 August 2015 – 2,586,200 daily installs (29 days)
  • 29 August 2015 to 06 October 2015 – 833,333 daily installs (42 days)
  • 06 October 2015 to 04 January 2016 – 989,010 daily installs/active users (91 days)
  • 04 January 2016 to 30 March 2016 – 804,597 active users daily (87 days)
  • 30 March 2016 to 05 May 2016 – 810,810 active users daily (37 days)

As you can see the averages have fluctuated up and down between each set of momentum numbers as the operating system has reached 300 million active users.

I expect to see a big jump in the active users between now and the end of the free Windows 10 upgrade offer which Microsoft confirmed last week will end on the one-year anniversary of the Windows 10 release. That bump in numbers could be just as big, if not bigger, than the 75 million installs that happened in the first month of Windows 10 availability and resulted in over 2.5 million daily installs.

So is Microsoft on track for making their goal of 1 billion devices running Windows 10 in 2-3 years?

I am going to do this math based on averages but I am going to only use the last four sets of momentum numbers and not the big bump of installs that happened in the first 30 days after Windows 10 was released. This also does not take into account the increase in installs that will occur in the final weeks leading up to the free upgrade expiring. By only using those averages it reflects what I believe is the status-quo when it comes to adding to the active user base for Windows 10.

Those last four set of daily installs/active users come out to a total of 3,437,750 and when divided by four equals 859,000 daily active users being added on Windows 10.

Taking that average and dividing it into the number of active users still needed to reach 1 billion, that is 700 million as of last week, that means Microsoft still needs 815 days to reach 1 billion devices running Windows 10.

The date in 815 days from 05 May, when we got the last batch of momentum numbers last week, will be 29 July 2018. That is exactly three years after the release of Windows 10 on 29 July 2015.

Now when you are working with averages there is some give and take obviously. I also opted to not include the big number of installs that were seen in the first month and we do not know how big the bump is going to be leading up the end of the free upgrade offer.

All of these can have an impact on when Microsoft reaches that magical 1 billion device number.

Will it happen?

Right now the momentum is riding a fine line so I say the jury is still out on reaching that goal but there is no doubt it will be watched very closely and result in either mountains of praise for Microsoft or criticism for being overzealous with their initial goal.

What do you think?

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