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Windows Vista reaches 100 million mark

Bill Gates talks up Vista sales in CES keynote

Microsoft has sold more than 100 million licences for its Windows Vista operating system (OS) since its launch 13 months ago, according to Bill Gates.

Speaking at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Gates announced that Vista had passed the 100-million mark during his keynote address.

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The last time Microsoft released Vista sales figures was in October, when it claimed it had shipped 88 million copies of the OS. Previously, it had claimed that 20 million copies were shipped in its first month after launch, 40 million copies in the opening 100 days and 60 million by late July.

In August, Forrester Research revealed that businesses were continuing to avoid Vista. The researcher said most of the IT managers it spoke to were waiting for the release of Vista Service Pack 1 (SP1) early next year before starting to "seriously consider" upgrading to Vista. The US government's Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), said last year that it may stick with Windows XP for up to three more years.

Gates didn't specify whether the 100 million excluded corporate licences, but simply said: "One hundred million people are using Vista now." When Microsoft claimed 88 million two months ago, it said the number didn't take into account copies available or sold to businesses via volume licensing deals.

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Vista has also battled underwhelming demand from consumers.

According to measurements collected by Net Applications, which monitors traffic at approximately 40,000 websites, Vista's share broke the 10 percent mark for the first time, to end the year at 10.5 percent. In comparison, Windows XP accounted for 76.9 percent and Mac OS X's 7.3 percent during December.

Based on original reporting by Gregg Keizer, Computerworld US.


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