100 Million Copies of Vista

After Bill Gates mentioned that Vista has sold 100,000,000 copies so far during his speech at CES, I didn’t really react one way or the other. But now that a couple of days have passed, I find myself wondering:

  • How many of those are actually in use?
  • Do those include the free upgrades that were shipping at one time?
  • Do those include people who bought a computer with Vista but then downgraded to XP?
  • Are volume license upgrades included in the hundred million?
  • The bottom line is that the more I think about it, the more that 100,000,000 seems inflated to me. For Microsoft shareholder benefit, I’m sure the number is real. After all, once Microsoft registers a sale, it goes to the bottom line no matter if the person uses the product or not.

    I think an interesting question to ask, particularly in the face of Microsoft’s “Windows Genuine” program is, how many copies of Vista have been ACTIVATED? I’ll throw out a number and see what people think: half? Could 50,000,000 copies of Vista have been activated since the launch? I would love to find out.

    In today’s world of serious market share challenges from other vendors, I believe it’s just as interesting to hear how many copies of Vista are in use as it is to hear the raw sales numbers.

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