Windows 8 passes Mac OS X on Steam survey

The slow adoption of Microsoft's new OS still puts it ahead of its competitor

Microsoft's Windows 8 has more users on Steam than Apple's Mac OS X, according to the most recent Steam Hardware & Software Survey. 4.69 percent of Steam users have upgraded to a version of Windows 8, versus 3.26 percent of users who have a version of OS X. Both operating systems fall far behind Microsoft's Windows 7, which has a combined share of 72.56 percent. Even Microsoft's older operating systems are ahead; Windows Vista commands a 8.07 percent share and Windows XP has a 10.83 percent share.


The current breakdown in operating systems.

The adoption of Windows 8 has been “well below Microsoft's internal projections”, according to Windows guru Paul Thurott.

“Sales of Windows 8 PCs are well below Microsoft's internal projections and have been described inside the company as disappointing. But here's the catch: The software giant blames the slow start on lackluster PC maker designs and availability, further justifying its new Surface strategy. One of my most trusted sources at Microsoft confirmed Windows 8's weak start this week,” wrote Thurrott in November.

The Steam survey also shows that Nvidia continues to run away with the GPU market on Steam. 66.72 percent of users use an Nvidia GPU, with AMD in second place at 26.51 percent. AMD has had a tough time against its longtime rival, posting a net loss of $157 million in Q3 2012. The company also lost its chief financial officer, Thomas Seifert, this September.

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Latest comments (7)

Adam Campbell Game Production Manager, Azoomee5 years ago
Is it really considered slow when the sales are apparently outselling Windows 7 at the same stage? Then considering the apparently huge shift towards tablets as the choice for an Internet enabled device?
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Bruce Everiss Marketing Consultant 5 years ago
You need a reason to upgrade. I have PCs on XP and on Windows 7 and currently, for my purposes, that is fine.

With Win 8 the big advantages I see are the store and the cross platform capability. Once Microsoft have reacted to the market's reception with some upgrades then Win 8 will mature into what more people want.
If someone has a Win 8 tablet or a Win 8 phone they will definitely want it on their desktop as well.
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Alfonso Sexto Lead Tester, Ubisoft Germany5 years ago
Let's see what they do with Windows 8. I only upgrade my PC hardware out of need, same goes for the OS.

Will be paying attention to this, nonetheless.
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M.H. Williams Staff Writer, USgamer5 years ago

Perception is everything. It's selling faster, but it's not breaking down barriers like hardware vendors thought it would. Combine their below-expectations sales numbers, the furor prior to release due to the new Start Screen and software issue, and Apple's continuing iPad sales, and you have a narrative that puts Microsoft on the defensive.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by M.H. Williams on 4th December 2012 3:02pm

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Yiannis Koumoutzelis Founder & Creative Director, Neriad Games5 years ago
There is no killer hardware/software for windows 8 yet. especially for gamers. Most of the win8 machines out there are either on mobile 640m cards or intel HD integrated. Even desktops. (Dell XPS 27 one which could be a killer carries 640m...) so no there will not be much adoption yet, not until real machines come out.
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Rolf Moren Freelance Marketing Consultant 5 years ago
Well.. AMD is probably not in such big problems as most people think. If the rumors are right, they got all three consoles in their corner this time around.
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Curt Sampson Sofware Developer 5 years ago
I wonder what proportion of Steam users designed their PC around gaming, and thus have made OS and hardware decisions optimized for that? I know that I did; I have several Linux PCs for my work, web browsing and other activities, and my gaming PC is dedicated to gaming. That's why it runs Windows 7, of course; it will until I start to see enough games requiring Windows 8 (and am playing few enough games incompatible with Windows 8) that I need to upgrade.

What Steam doesn't see is that I'd be happy to run Steam under Linux and even do run some games under Linux already. There could well be MacOS X users in the same situation.
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