Survey indicates US consumers like Windows 10

Martin Brinkmann
Jan 15, 2016
Updated • Jul 5, 2017
Windows, Windows 10

How well is Windows 10 received, that is one of the core questions that is not only of interest to Microsoft but also to any end user and company that considers upgrading to Microsoft's new operating system in the future.

According to a study by IDC which polled 1009 adults from the United States "about their attitudes toward Microsoft's latest operating system" Windows 10, it is well liked by the majority.

The study is not publicly available -- one can purchase access for $500 -- but Computerworld published some of the core findings of the study:

  1. Over 60% of participants picked favorable or "very favorable" when asked how they liked the new operating system.
  2. Only 10% picked the other end of the spectrum by rating Windows 10 as either unfavorable or "very unfavorable".

The actual figures, and other choices have not been revealed, but it looks as if 60% rated Windows 10 as positive, 10% as negative, and 30% somewhere in the middle of the two.

The low sample size of the survey, 1009 participants of which about 30% confirmed they were running a PC with Windows 10, indicates that the poll is skewed towards early adopters. Additional weight is added to the assumption as 37% of participants who ran a PC with Windows 10 stated that they were part of the Windows Insider program.

Of the remaining percent, 45% stated that they upgraded to Windows 10 through the Get Windows 10 application on machines running Windows 7 or 8, while only 5% stated that they purchased the operating system as a retail copy.

So, of the 300 or so users who ran Windows 10, 60% liked the operating system while 10% disliked it. A takeaway from the survey is that the overwhelming majority of customers who run Windows 10 PCs have accepted Microsoft's upgrade offer, while only a minority bought the operating system through retail channels.

Microsoft stated as well in January 2016 that customers are loving Windows 10 and that the company is seeing higher customer satisfaction than with any prior version of Windows, but that is an expected reaction considering that the company needs Windows 10 to succeed.

We are even more excited that these customers are loving Windows 10. Overall, we are seeing significantly higher customer satisfaction with Windows 10 than any prior version of Windows.

Now You: What's your take on the survey and the published results?

Survey indicates US consumers like Windows 10
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Survey indicates US consumers like Windows 10
A recent survey by IDC revealed that the majority of participants running Windows 10 PCs rate the operating system positively.
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  1. Bob Bobson said on February 8, 2016 at 9:59 pm

    Gee, I didn’t know that IDC was a Microsoft subsidiary… ¬_¬

  2. A different Martin said on January 18, 2016 at 5:29 am

    I’d rather see a well-designed, neutral survey of sysadmins who have evaluated Windows 10 for possible deployment in their organizations.

  3. Harry Weiner said on January 18, 2016 at 1:54 am

    Well, obviously most of the people USING windows 10 are going to be happy with it, or they wouldn’t be using it. I imagine the majority of people who eat canned spam would say they are happy with canned spam, too. That doesn’t mean it’s good for you, or that the overall population would agree. This is just more M$ marketing spin.

  4. S2015 said on January 17, 2016 at 5:22 am

    In some way, Microsoft deserves this score, after pushing Windows 10 that hard, such as notification in taskbar (* this would happen only when one’s computer meets the system requirements), stop supporting XP, IE, etc. LOL
    Yet, there’s (huge) room to improve the “last” (* not latest) OS from Microsoft, such as security, software compatibility, user experience, etc.

  5. Decent60 said on January 16, 2016 at 11:24 am

    I bet most of the people who liked it, came from Windows 8.1, which was annoying beyond all means. Also the fact that it was “free”.

  6. Lorenzo said on January 16, 2016 at 1:23 am

    So what are the numbers for Ubuntu Linux and Apple OS X users — more like 90% approval rate??? My primary tool is Ubuntu Linux — it just works, with updates which install in a couple minutes and don’t waste my time like Windows. Yea, there are some cool features in Windows and it runs some software not available on other OS, but I don’t miss that software in my daily life. Actually, I would rate Chrome OS higher than Windows in that it works without all the hassles of Windows. My Mac Mini runs too slow these days on OS X, so only an upgrade to SSD would save the day there. Yep, Apple still uses spinner from laptops on base models. I got the extra RAM up to 8GB on my 2012, but it is still slow. My Toshiba Chromebook and System76 Ubuntu Linux PC with SSD just fly! My ASUS little Windows PC usually starts or ends with Please Wait while Windows Updates message, and then ya wait and wait. And my whole system and software stays up to date with Linux and Chrome OS — no worries, and usually no rebooting.

  7. Robert said on January 15, 2016 at 11:47 pm

    I bought a PC with W10 preinstalled and I wouldn’t say I dislike it because I configured it to look exactly as a Windows XP. The only problem is that even though it has 4GB of RAM, it runs slightly slower than my old Vista computer of 2 GB. And I had to disable the Windows Update because it seems out of order. So, for now I must be of that 30% not favorable nor unfavorable.

    1. Decent60 said on January 16, 2016 at 11:27 am

      Depends on what company you get it from, the bloatware they preinstall can be enough to slow it down to a crawl.
      Girlfriend was having some issues with her Windows 8.1 laptop that we bought. After an hour of me messing with it (updates, uninstalling, installing different products, etc) it was running 3x faster than when she got it brand new. Only way it will get faster now is if we upgrade it to an SSD.

  8. Valrobex said on January 15, 2016 at 11:05 pm

    Having taught Statistics and Research Design at the college level in a by-gone era of my life, those comments suggesting that this “survey” is less than accurate are correct. The 1009 “sample size” is the minimum required in order to have a 95% confidence level. But that assumes the survey is well structured. The fact that 37% of the Win 10 upgrades were Windows Insiders blows the survey totally out of the water – a point some of the comments picked up on.

    As usual, Martin cogently analyzed the article and while not getting wrapped up with statistical gobble-d-gook he hit the nail on the head. And in typical fashion he presented his thoughts with dignity and professionalism. Well done, Martin.

    @ Gary D – Your quote comes from one of my personal heroes, Abraham Lincoln. Thanks for quoting him. Yours and edwardM’s comments summarized the situation no doubt accurately.

    It is somewhat amusing that MS released this “survey.” Methinks there is trouble brewing for Win 10 and that it is not being installed the way MS had hoped. Hence the “survey” to make it appear that all is well when it’s not.

    The true test of how well Win 10 is being accepted relies solely upon time. It’s anyone’s guess whether folks will ultimately switch to Win 10. I’ve used Win 7 for years but I have loaded Linux Mint with VirtualBox for some legacy software and love it. I’m still in “Linux diapers” so to speak, but what I’ve learned so far is exciting.

    1. Gary D said on January 16, 2016 at 12:54 am

      @ Valrobex

      Thank you for my 15 seconds of fame :-)

    2. Pants said on January 16, 2016 at 12:10 am

      I am shocked I tell you. Shocked. I swore never to read again after ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ gave me no useful advice on killing mockingbirds. And now this. Statistics masquerading as lies, lies and damn lies :)

      I think if we remove the obvious outliers, we can, with 100% confidence, conclude that 100% of WIndows 10 users were totally underwhelmed or hated the product.

  9. Nebulus said on January 15, 2016 at 10:52 pm

    This survey is marketing propaganda, and better treated as such.

  10. Halef said on January 15, 2016 at 8:03 pm

    People please relax. It is not worth getting into an argument about MS. Either you take the plunge and get Win 10 or you don’t. And looking at the comments I could do a survey which would be contrary to the one mentioned above. And now guess which one I would trust more. To all of you a nice weekend.

    1. Gary D said on January 15, 2016 at 8:47 pm

      Let me think, Halef, which survey you would trust. IDC’s or Halef’s ?
      Gee, that’s a hard question to answer.
      IDC ??? :-)

      A nice weekend to you too !

  11. Gary D said on January 15, 2016 at 7:29 pm

    @Chains The Bounty Hunter.

    I was perfectly relaxed when I wrote the post.
    Capitals are the only way to emphasise points in the post.
    If they are not emphasised, they pass right over some readers heads !
    You find my comments obnoxious and unhelpful.
    You probably saw the capitals and thought TROLL !!! Did you actually absorb my comments ?
    Do you have any constructive input about my post ?

    1. Chains The Bounty Hunter said on January 16, 2016 at 2:07 pm

      You immediately assume that I assume you were being a troll because you hammered the shift key liberally? Is there some unwritten rule that whenever someone responds to another who does that, that then they consider them a troll?

      Even now, with your overuse of exclamatory punctuation I don’t think “this individual is a troll”, I just think “this person really needs to relax”.

      As to constructive input, emphasis can be had without excess use of the shift key or exclamation marks.

      Expecting people to “absorb” your comments in the way you want them to, you might consider not presenting them in such a fashion that gives others the impression that you seem keen to leap to that they’d consider you to be a troll or the one that I see which is that of someone attempting to provide information in a completely unhelpful manner.

      The need to apologize for writing such responses wouldn’t be necessary if more consideration would be put for toward the overall construction. The typical overuse of caps lock/the shift key or exclamatory punctuation could just as easily have brought about nasty responses, despite the fact that your intention was to provide valuable information and not to present it in such a way that makes it seem as though you’re just upset and stopping short of delivering full insults to the person you respond toward.

      1. Gary D said on January 16, 2016 at 10:05 pm

        @Chain The Bounty Hunter
        Who is trolling who now ?

        This site is for people who want to to make constructive comments, negative or positve. I comment regularly on different articles. I do not recollect seeing your handle before, commenting on other articles. Furthermore, read other comments I have written in this thread.

        I do not need a lecture, on the use of emphasis, by a pedantic plonker who seems to have been a teacher in a previous existence. I can visualise you at the front of the class, throwing essays, with comments written in red ink, back at the pupils. EG “Must do better. Use less emphasis.”

        BTW you lost 10 marks for poor sentence construction in the last paragraph, first line. “…..consideration would be put for toward the overall construction.” Also, your overall lack of correct punctuation is abysmal. Where are the required commas, full stops, colons, etc.?

        Basically, go forth and multiply. BTW what sort of a handle is “Chains The Bounty Hunter”.

        As far as I am concerned this discussion is over. You can post but you will be ignored.

    2. Tom Hawack said on January 15, 2016 at 7:53 pm

      No problem, Gary D. You haven’t insulted nor even yelled. I think we got to understand your exasperation..

  12. edwardM said on January 15, 2016 at 7:28 pm

    This opinion “survey” is unreliable nonsense, as everybody here correctly recognizes.

    – Most large population opinion surveys are unscientific, including all the major polls you commonly see in the media.

    – Any survey issued without a detailed methodology & results is worthless to readers; very unlikely this WIN10 survey issued such details even after penetrating the $500 paywall.

    – The 1,009 sample size is statistically acceptable, if randomly selected — but it was not even close to being a ‘random sample’ (none of these opinion surveys are ever random. They had to contact several thousand people to get 1,009 who would talk to them.

    – Response Rate is the key thing to look for in judging opinion surveys — what percentage of the originally selected ‘survey sample’ actually were successfully contacted… and completed the survey (?) Typically nowadays, less than 10% of people selected in a survey sample end up being counted in poll results — meaning the pollsters have no idea what 90% of their “sample” actually think about the issue being investigated. (of course there are several other big sources of error in polls)

  13. swamper said on January 15, 2016 at 5:52 pm

    Bet the same spectrum of people liked Vista and Win 8. Mindless Ad clickers all. Same type of folks that come down with completely virus infested PC’s 2-3 times a year. Bet they all love Android and are attached at the palms to their cell phone.

    It’s not difficult to find 1009 clueless individuals anywhere. That just 30% of are running Win 10 and are Windows Insiders takes the cake. I’d base all my marketing decisions on that 30% if I was one of the largest corporations in the world too. Especially if I knew the other 70% were lemmings.

    I needed a good laugh this morning!!!! LOL!!!

    I booted my Win 7 the other day and my anti-spyware squalled it hadn’t been updated in 112 days… About 5 minutes later I booted back to a Linux, it’s still not updated…

  14. Robert said on January 15, 2016 at 5:27 pm

    I just upgraded my Windows 7 this week and I really like it. I didn’t use the express install and also used the “W10Privacy” software. I sign into Windows with the gmail account that I had to setup for my new Android powered Blackberry Priv. I find that Windows is just as intrusive as Google when it comes to customer privacy. They are competitors after all. I still prefer Linux Mint but Microsoft has the money to entice developers to create superb software that Linux sometimes lacks. I love the way Windows 10 is laid out and their are some good apps in the store as well.

    1. Corky said on January 16, 2016 at 9:49 am

      Up until you used the word “superb” Robert you almost had me, sadly that’s on of the supposedly hip words Microsoft use to describe things so your post seem to come across as being from a Microsoft shill.

    2. Gary D said on January 15, 2016 at 6:39 pm

      Will you PLEASE STOP comparing Windows to Google.

      Windows is an OPERATING SYSTEM !!!
      It controls EVERYTHING which runs on your PC/Laptop/Notebook !!!
      Unless you use Linux, you have NO choice but to use it !!!

      GOOGLE CHROME is a BROWSER !! You do NOT have to use it. There are Firefox, Cyberfox, Opera, etc !!

      THEREFORE Windows and Google are NOT competitors.
      YOU are comparing APPLES (Windows) to ORANGES (Google)

      I know Google has the Chrome Book and may in the FUTURE be a major competitor against MS.

      MS wants to entice developers ? HOW, when Win 10 has made a lot of excellent software inoperable.

      Apologies to Martin and intelligent posters. I do not usually write in capitals and am not a Troll.

      1. insanelyapple said on January 16, 2016 at 11:42 am

        Robert isn’t entirely wrong – MS and Google are competitors in field of cloud services: they both got office web applications, pim clients, cloud storage and most of all, web search engines.

        And yes, they both abuse client/customers with privacy and security – Gmail was harassing users for phone number upon login (still does that and page pretends there’s no way to skip that) and after that, Hotmail got same “feature”.

      2. lila5411 said on January 16, 2016 at 11:10 am


      3. Corky said on January 16, 2016 at 10:20 am

        @Robert, Android is a mobile operating system, people are used to these kind of privacy invasions on some mobile devices and they are free to either buy a smart phone and except the privacy / convenience trade off, or not buy one, for instance i use a very simple PAYG non smart phone that’s only capable of SMS and phone calls as i value my privacy.

        What you’re comparing, Microsoft and Google is a fair comparison and i understand why yourself and other make it, unfortunately you and others seem to misunderstand that the two operating systems are entirely different, Windows has historically been used in the desktop space, a space that has historically been in business and people homes, a space that people have restricted access to, a private space.
        Android, from the outset, has always been a mobile devices operating system and people were free to either buy into that ecosystem or not, they knew what they were buying, they knew what the trade offs were, and they were free to either take it or leave it.

        What yourself, others and Microsoft seem to be saying is that one operating system can be used for all devices when (IMHO) that’s simply not true, what people like yourself and Microsoft fail to realise is that most people have a private and public face, a private and public life, most people use mobile devices differently than non mobile devices (desktops).

        Since Windows 8 Microsoft have failed to understand that one operating system can’t be used on all devices and Windows 10 is just a continuation of their attempts at having a one size fits all OS, Microsoft hasn’t learnt the lessons of Windows 8, they still fail to understand that mobile devices are different than desktop operating systems, Apple knows that, why hasn’t Microsoft cottoned on yet?

      4. Robert said on January 15, 2016 at 10:54 pm

        The Android operating system is Google. So is Google Chrome the browser which come preinstalled with the Android operating system.

      5. Tom Hawack said on January 15, 2016 at 7:50 pm

        @Chains The Bounty Hunter, perhaps a revolt or even an exasperation is what most requires a helping hand, a revolt not an injurious yelling of course. We all know a revolt may be, if not holy, at least honest as well as a placid comment may well be the pit of a calm cynicism. I wouldn’t wish to mistake content and form, even if I agree with you that dialog is difficult within insurrection. Perhaps it is worth sometimes to try to dig before abandoning.

      6. Chains The Bounty Hunter said on January 15, 2016 at 7:05 pm

        You wouldn’t need to apologize if you relaxed a little.

        I’m all for encouraging people to come to an understanding concerning certain things but each time I see someone pointing out things in such a fashion it just seems utterly obnoxious and unhelpful.

  15. Chains The Bounty Hunter said on January 15, 2016 at 5:18 pm

    At least this data continues to perpetuate how half-assed things are done in America.

    With this ridiculously small sample size the only thing the data seems good for is the punchline of a joke. If any comedian is desperate enough to spend that much for it, then they should really consider alternative career paths.

  16. Tom Hawack said on January 15, 2016 at 4:14 pm

    The idea, unless a survey is conducted seriously, is to include it in an arsenal of company communication tools aiming at one thing : make everyone believe that all others (wide majority to give a touch of veracity, like in dictator lead pseudo-democracies) are very happy with the product. Considering that many, many (a majority?) of us hate to feel out of the game, we may very well adopt that product within a total lack of objectivity.

    I’m not going to spare $500 to know the exact protocol of this survey but on the basis of a range of 1,000 samples I’d consider is as such as irrelevant.

    Anyway, if it is true that most users are technologically unaware of the insights of their computing device their opinion is most likely to omit the very first reproach addressed at Win10 which is privacy concerns and focus mainly on usability.

    Some companies always forget that the best ad is what users say to each other rather than to a survey, which and which will always reflect a mood far more than a reality of convictions.

    1. Tom Hawack said on January 15, 2016 at 4:28 pm

      Forgot to mention that 37% of 30% of samples (participants who ran a PC with Windows 10 stated that were part of the Windows Insider program.) leads to roughly 10% which is totally inconsistent in the representativeness of this survey : not 10% of Americans (even of those running a computer device) participated to the Windows Insider program as far as I know.

      1. Gary D said on January 15, 2016 at 5:26 pm

        “You can fool SOME of the people ALL of the time.
        You can fool ALL of the people SOME of the time.
        You CANNOT fool ALL of the people ALL of the time.”

        This “survey” is completely flawed. I have worked in marketing.
        I would bet that, before IDC did the survey, there were a lot of call centres pre-qualifying the potential participants and weeding out the non Win10 users.
        The pre-qualification would also have weeded out the really pissed off Win 10 upgraders who had their machines screwed up by botched installs, “incompatible” software removal, “updated” hardware drivers, etc.
        So, to get 1,009 happy Win 10 bunnies, there were at least 20 times that number pre-qualified.

        I know that companies like IDC, if they want to be employed in the future, will always put the best possible spin on data in favour of their client. After all, MS has lots of money to burn on a lot more pointless PR exercises.

        How many Americans use computers ? 200,000,000 ? More? Using the 200,000,000 figure, only 1 in 200,000 were surveyed.
        In scientific analysis, the use of such a low percentage would be regarded as useless and the results would be dismissed as a statistical anomaly.

        Watch out for Microsoft cheer leader Ed Bott’s next article. Headline ” I TOLD you Win 10 is wonderful ! ”

        Would Win 10 trolls, shills and Nadella lovers, please refrain from posting inane comments such as
        “Tinfoil hat wearer”, “Neanderthal”, etc, etc.
        Please be a little more constructive !!

  17. hahaha said on January 15, 2016 at 4:05 pm

    1009 people can represent the whole usa?

    1. turdythethird said on January 15, 2016 at 7:50 pm

      That’s not enough people for any real idea about what people really think .Thats about 0.31601585728444 percent of the population then.

      1. Lurking Again said on January 17, 2016 at 2:42 am

        If the survey is properly done and is properly representative then a sample of ~1000+ will give a good indication of the public’s attitudes. Now where leading questions used, skewing the results and is the sample truly representative of the users. Also, did the survey include people who tried W10 but rolled back to a previous version. Without seeing details, it is impossible to tell if this basically marketing hype using a sloppy survey or valid data.

    2. Boris said on January 15, 2016 at 6:32 pm

      I think they use this number for minimum acceptable sample size. They use can use this number for any country because I am seeing this number all the time in samples.

  18. juju said on January 15, 2016 at 3:34 pm

    You have to keep in mind that in this day n’age most of such surveys are used as bribe type transactions to funnel or launder money. Very widespread practice in public sector. Nothing scientific about such things.

    1. insanelyapple said on January 16, 2016 at 11:23 am

      If survey results aren’t publicly available but for price of 500USD then there’s no reason why survey wouldn’t be obtainable in first place for 5mln USD or so for corporations.

      International Data Corporation who prepared this survey, belongs to International Data Group who is also the parent company for Computerworld. So yeah, consumers in number of “representative” 1009 US adults like Windows 10.

      1. juju said on January 16, 2016 at 12:17 pm

        Oh and don’t forget that saying that “eyes are the windows to the soul”. Why do you think that CIA hermaphrodite Bill Gates started doing this shady vaccine business?

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