Microsoft Surface users account for 8% of Windows 8 devices worldwide, dominates RT category.

Latest data from advertisement network AdDuplex reveals usage statistics of both Windows 8 and Windows RT in the first month of 2013. Information presented in this report was collected on January 14th (112 Windows Store apps running the AdDuplex SDK). As well as usages, Windows RT devices and multiple geographic locations are also included.

AdDuplex Win 8 RT

The first chart (above) shows a strong presence from Microsoft's Surface RT worldwide at 7.6%, while the remaining top 10 is populated by multiple manufacturers. AdDuplex notes that the company has seen more than 7,400 different device models running Windows 8 this month, compared to just over 5,000 a month ago. 

It's a strong (and expected) start for Microsoft, but the company has some way to go with the Surface Pro tablet yet to launch. It'll be interesting to see how the market changes with a second, more powerful tablet from the company in the mix. Looking at manufacturers directly:

AdDuplex Win 8 RT

Windows 8 and RT: Non-Surface hardware

The above chart shows Hewlett-Packard maintaining its lead with ASUS up into second place at 10%. Dell is joint with ASUS, while Acer takes fourth position on 9%. It's interesting to see HP remain ahead with Windows 8 / RT. But what about market penetration, which country represents the most active userbase?

AdDuplex Win 8 RT

The US accounts for 35% of hardware running Windows 8 / RT. This is followed by the UK on just 8%, showing a huge gap between the two markets. India, Germany and Canada are each on 4%, following second place. It's interesting to see how low China is in the rankings. AdDuplex reports that the market is in 55th place, which is a slight step down from its performance in the Windows Phone ecosystem.

AdDuplex Win 8 RT

Microsoft Surface and its impact

As can be seen in the above chart, there are no surprises apart from Puerto Rico claiming a spot in top 10. Overall the report shows consumers using Surface tablets in 115 countries. AdDuplex also provides individual market breakdown, which we'll summarise below:

  • US - Surface RT is ranked first for both Windows 8 and RT devices, while HP leads manufacturers with Microsoft in third position.
  • Germany - Microsoft's tablet leads in Germany with a few Medion laptops in the top ten. Interestingly, the Acer ICONIO W510 performing well against the Surface. Acer is the leading manufacturer in the country, with HP sat in third.
  • India - This is the one market where Microsoft doesn't hold the top position with the Surface (it's ranked 5th), HP hardware takes the lead. Dell leads manufacturer rankings in India, with HP in second and Sony in third.

It should be noted that AdDuplex was unable to identify Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 11 in logs analysed. This is likely due to the inability to discover the model name. The full AdDuplex report will be published in full tomorrow. It's a good insight into how things are progressing in multiple markets, as well as worldwide. While this report is by no means 100% accurate in representing activity, it's a starting point.

[Edit: As some users are suggesting, these numbers are skewed to RT devices since it measures RT app usage via the Store. The opposing theory says that those on Windows 8 proper simply don't use RT apps as much as those with a Surface.

That is certainly plausible although without any firm numbers of usage patterns of non-RT users, it's hard to say for sure. Due to the "in your face" approach of the RT interface and Store we're not entirely convinced of the distinction just yet.]

Rich Edmonds
Senior Editor, PC Build

Rich Edmonds was formerly a Senior Editor of PC hardware at Windows Central, covering everything related to PC components and NAS. He's been involved in technology for more than a decade and knows a thing or two about the magic inside a PC chassis. You can follow him on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.

  • Eh? Thought they'd shipped 60 million win8 licences and about 1 million surfaces. Does not compute!
  • Did you mean *computer?
  • @futurewhippet No one seriously believed those numbers and you have to make a very important distinction: Selling a license does NOT equal selling a device to actual customers. OEMs buy licenses. People buy computers and use them (then see ads). There are *not* 60 million Windows 8 users out there. Sorry. This is also but one single metric to measure Windows 8 distribution amongst the various devices but is not of itself the final word.
  • Also, it stands to reason that RT users are going to use more 'Metro' apps than Windows 8 desktop users, so the figures would be distorted by that (i.e. it will exaggerate the RT numbers).
    And the 1,000,000 Surface sales is not an official figure, and of course as you said the 60,000,000 Windows 8 licences doesn't translate directly to consumers as it includes PCs on shelves and in warehouses that haven't been sold (or even built) yet.
  • I took advange of the $15 upgrade and upgraded my two computers to windows 8. I helped two friends of mine to upgrade as well. So I believe that 2/3 of those 60 millions of licenses are upgrades. That puts 40 millions of windows 8 in use. If every windows 8 computer uses data equally, the number of surfaces is about 3 millions. Discount that number by half, 1.5 millions of Surface is likely. 
  • 1 million Surfaces isn't an official figure so it doesnt have to compute.
    However the 60 million includes licenses sold to OEMs and companies. Unlike end-users they usually dont immediatly implement all licenses. OEMs first have to sell their stock before using more licenses and companies something wait years before upgrading their PCs. But by the same definition Windows 7 isn't far ahead of Windows 8 so I'm suprised by how well Windows 8 did (for being something so radically different).
    Although it seems likely to me that Surface sold more than 1 million, this 8% is a bit off and that there are about 25 million active Windows 8 users.
  • Not everyone with the software also downloads apps from the store. On RT devices it's a must because of the lack of legacy software, but on Pro not everyone has need to use / understanding of the store to get apps.
  • Yes and no...there's no data I'm aware of showing different usage patterns on non-RT devices versus RT ones. It's an assumption that there is. Due to the RT interface and Store being so upfront with Windows 8, I'm not entirely convinced that a large chunk of Windows 8 users are simply ignoring the Store and RT apps, though it is certainly plausible. 
  • I am completely convinced that there is a sizable amount of the user base who has not installed an AdDuplex-driven app from the Store. Users who went and bought ordinary laptops that happened to be running Windows 8 would not be incentivised to do so.
  • Why assume that they wouldn't? Like Daniel said, it's not like you can miss the Store right there on the Start screen. Plus, since so many apps are free, why would a user just totally ignore them?
  • Because on Windows 8 you don't get access to the store if you login to the computer with an ordinary Windows account. I know a fair number of Windows 8 users who do not have Microsoft accounts. As for myself, I'd say my usage pattern is about 30% apps, and 70% desktop applications.
  • I would agree with the mind set that Win8 Laptop owners don't spend a lot of time in the Store.  I bought a touchscreen Acer Ci3 laptop.  I probably spend 75% of the time in desktop mode using regular websites.  I don't NEED to use the ESPN app because I can go to and view it like normal on the 15" screen.  IE10 / Chrome and the websites they display have been built out of 20 years of trial and error to get near perfection.  The apps are built on 2-3 months...  I'll take the universal website with millions of users.
    Plus too many apps don't have a back button!  If you read an article on a lot of them, the 'back' button stays on the far left of the article.  So when you are done, it is hidden!  My WinPhone 8 has me needing an always present button on my laptop, haha.
  • Because people don't change for the sake of change, there are few advantages of apps without tailored hardware and users may not log in with a Microsoft account. They are replacing a laptop they bought where they get their news, weather, and other services online. There's no reason they'd start downloading a bunch of apps (also, the official apps that users will be likely to install will not be using AdDuplex).
  • I agree it would seem strage to not use the store, but a quick census of my friends with Windows 8 machines says that only one of them uses the store, and the rest still barely use the new start screen.
  •  Well licenses do not represent hardware sold entirely this could be businesses and consumers upgrading existing hardware as well as OEMs purchasing them for new hardware. What this graph shows is they sold around 12 million windows 8 systems last year? If so that isn't bad.
  • And people really think that the reason Samsung didn't introduce their RT tablet was because of "lack of consumer demand". No, they didn't release their tablets here because they knew their product could not compete head to head with the Surface. 
  • LOL keep telling yourself that man.
  • He's got a point. Why would anyone buy a non Surface RT if they wanted an RT device. Unless the device has NFC or a smaller screen, how can it compete with the Surface?
  • Rhodi22...Well, the Surface is only available (in the U.S.) at MS stores and Best Buy; if Samsung had released a RT device, it's safe to say that their devices would have a wider distribution channel, yes? I think the more ubiquitous the device, the greater the chances of having higher sales. That is how it would compete with the Surface.
  • The problem is though that only a select few want an RT device, and those people are probably aware that the Surface exists. But yes, I see your point, Samsung would have pushed it into mainstrem stores.
  • Frankly, I agree with this. When I was shopping for an RT device, I looked at all of them. I already have a Samsung Series 7 slate, a Series 9 ultrabook so it made sense to look at their take on the RT with the Ativ Tab. The price point was pushing it and the overall package just isn't as compelling as the Surface RT. And even if that were not the case, no one had them in stock. Acer had one legitimate RT but it was nearly as much as the Surface so it didn't make sense. All the other tablets were running Atom processors with Win8 Pro but I actually wanted RT to keep it simple. OEM's didn't show up to the party. Samsung can blame MS all they want but you don't see Asus, HP and Lenovo complaining, do you? I do like the Acer Aspire S7 but I wasn't in the market for a work horse. I'll probably pick up another RT one of these days and the Surface has done well. The one we have is a high value device between my wife and daughter.
  • Or did you mean comute?
  • Daniel, I realise that, but 8% surface? Really?
  • Oops. Meant to be a reply up there ^ somewhere
  • Well, this is a fairly substantive collection of data as opposed to what's in category B to compare it to, which is nothing. Not sure what else to say except that the difference between licenses sold and Win 8 PC adoption is a lot greater than thought.
  • The figures aren't that useful because the usage patterns of a Windows RT user are going to be different than a Windows 8 users. These numbers are reported from Windows Store apps. Windows RT devices run Windows Store apps exclusively. Windows 8 devices run desktop and Windows Store apps, likely with a heavy bias towards desktop apps.
  • Plausible. Although as someone who has a Win 8 laptop I sure use RT apps a lot in addition to my main three Desktop ones (Office and Elemetns).
  • Very good point.  Not many people use Windows 8 app store since its total crap.  I havent downloaded a single app, and I dont know of anyone who uses Windows 8 on a desktop that has.  I tried to look for apps in the app store, and I could not even find the search bar.  Total mess. 
  • Use the charm its a search
  • @gibbage  "Not many people use Windows 8 app store since its total crap." Do you have actual numbers to back that up or are you just, you know, pulling out of your derriere? (Anecdotes don't count for anything in the real world, by the way. So "I don't know anyone" means zero here). Because here we're only interested in actual numbers, stats and data not your personal experience.
  • You were joking right? No wonder you consider it 'total crap' if you haven't figured out the charms-bar. Charms are what make Windows 8 quicker and easier to use then previous versions of Windows. I use the search charm for everything, including searching for apps to purchase right from the startscreen.
    As a desktop user (non-touch) I find myself using more and more moderns apps because charm functionality isnt available on the desktop. I'd sugest you restart your Windows 8 experience by learning the basic principles, doesnt take more than 5 minutes. Most apps have their search and options build into the charms. Also have you figured out the 'right click for taskbar'?
  • Gibbage, the only people who say "I dont know anyone...."
    Is just a biased person who refers to a source we cannot coorobrate.
    In fact, EVERYONE in my office has upgraded to Windows 8. They were all on Win7 and unlike most new versions of Windows does not need a bump in requirements (used to be RAM!)
    It takes a while to acclimatise to Metro, and on my Desktop I don't use it that much. But on Surface I use it all the time. And over time I spend more time in the touch mail, touch calendar and touch people hub. I am slowly weening myself off Desktop apps - but we have decades of mental wiring to untangle. One of my kids has the Surface and has found things intuitavely and pointed them out even to me.
    Touch will be on every. Mobile is everything. Most computers will be phones, tablets and laptops. Desktop are now very niche. For example where i am, 80% of machines are laptops. Exceptions being DTP and video creators and very static people like PAs.
    But back to your point, no, not every dislikes it. On the contratry I really love Windows 8.
  • Haha you don't know how to search in W8 but are claiming the store is total crap?
  • You don't need the charm at all. Open the store and start typing.
  • Amen. It really can't get easier than that.
  • You're going to keep hating Windows 8 until you figure out how the charms bar works. I'd suggest you try it.
    As for me, I use Windows 8 apps about 80% of the time, only switching to desktop for gaming or Office.
  • Puerto Rico! I can attest to this. Microsoft is doing a pretty good job down there. Most electronics retailers and phone carriers have Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 devices. I wouldn't be surprised if, in particular the Windows Phone market share is close to 10% there.
  • Love my Surface. Only thing holding back is the 10,000,000 conflicting reasons the developers are giving to as why they are not supporting it.
  • Agreed 110%.
  • As it stands (speaking for myself), the Surface Pro seems like the most reasonably priced and spec'd Windows 8 Pro tablet-PC with a pen at this time. The Samsung and Lenovo equivalents are clearly more expensive, unfortunately.
    That said, if not having proper digitizer support isn't an issue, the Acer options aren't bad. And the ASUS laptops are fairly priced and spec'd as well. But they need to consider pricing the Clover Trail devices a bit lower.  
  • >The US accounts for 35% of hardware running Windows 8 / RT. This is followed by the UK on just 8%, showing a huge gap between the two markets
    US has 5 times the population (at least 5x as many people) so... times 8% by 5 to reach 40% equivalent.
    So per capita, UK once again beats the USA ;) Just kidding, we love you ;)
  • It's interesting that while Canada has the lowest percentage of Windows Phone usage in the developed world, according to this chart Canada has the highest percentage of Windows 8 usage.
  • We are highly evolved.
  • I can tell you every monday at our work staff meeting when I pop my surface on the desk everyone wants one because the iPad cant do and excel or word
  • When Microsoft sales a license to OEM, they get paid. As for as Microsoft is concerned, they get paid when they sale licenses, not when consumers buy the products. Except when they are selling surfaces which I am not even sure they count.
  • I'm suspecting that a lot of the big gap between the US and other markets is to do with the fact that it is only recently the Surface has become available through retail stores?  No MS Stores in the UK, but john Lewis do now stock them - Guessing this might mean the uptake of UK usage is a couple of months behind that of the US?
  • Still waiting for my favorite Surface article: Pre-orders now open for Surface Pro.
  • Im still waiting for this to go down $$$..the pro is really nice
  • Guys. it says "usage statistics". When I just want to surf the web, I prefer surface to desktop.
  • If the 1.77% for windows 8 is true, then that would make it atleast two million surfaces out there.
  • IN YOUR FACE! lol ;p
  • I love my surface.  BEST TABLET EVER!!!!
  • I was checking out Surface RT at one of Verizon stores, and I love it. I compared it to my dad's iCrap, Surface win big time!
  • I dont think the Surface RT or any other RT is out in India yet, i had to get mine from All the way from USA , got the asus vivo Tab RT  
  • why did they use comma's in the first graph instead of periods?
  • It shows RT for INDIA??? It is not even officially available here and on Ebay costs nearly INR 50,000 (USD1000) on ebay with the touch cover imported from USA. So it seems the reseller is making quite a lot of money...
  • There is still no Windows 8 love for me. Most IT people I talk to feel the same way. I guess when Windows 9 comes out and there is a start menu, we'll know not everyone accepted it.
    I still would like to see "box"/retail Windows 8 sales. How many people actually went out and paid for Windows 8 to upgrade their Windows based computer ? Or paid for a full version for a new computer they built. Those are the numbers I am only interested in seeing.
  • I don't see the value in addduplex data.