Windows 11 still struggles to convince users to upgrade, but it only has itself to blame

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(Image credit: Microsoft)

Despite all the hype behind Microsoft’s latest operating system, it seems to be struggling to get users to upgrade several months after its release.

According to a survey by market analyst AdDuplex for April 2022, Windows 11 has had a growth of less than 0.4% month-over-month. This puts it at a 19.7% total user base, compared to 19.4% from last month. Meanwhile, Windows 10 21H2 has a total install base of 35% while Windows 10 21H1 is installed on an additional 26.4% of Windows PCs.

Another study from Lansweeper, an IT asset management company, found that there were more PCs in its study running Windows XP (1.71%) than Windows 11 (1.44%).

However, it’s important to note that only 60,000 Windows 10 and 11 PCs were part of the AdDuplex survey, and that was only for PCs running the AdDuplex software in the first place. The Lansweeper study also used a very small sample size, so take all this data with a pinch of salt.

TechRadar has reached out to Microsoft for comment about the installation base of Windows 11 and we'll update the story if and when we hear back from the company.

Analysis: Why is Windows 11 not catching on?

There are several possible reasons for the low usage share growth this month, as well as the low total percentage of users with Windows 11 overall.

The most pressing issue by far is the strict installation requirements — including a Trusted Platform Module (TPM) 2.0 cryptoprocessor. This would require many businesses and casual consumers to upgrade their PCs to at least an Intel eighth-gen processor or an AMD Zen+ or Zen 2 CPU. This isn't something that a lot of off-the-shelf users are even going to consider doing. It's also an expensive and difficult proposition considering the ongoing components shortages.

This even appears to be an issue with Microsoft itself, as a Program Manager was caught running an unsupported PC during the Windows Insider Webcast. 

Windows 11 also has interface issues such as the location of the Taskbar, the Start menu being an odd mix of Windows 10 and a touch interface, the Search app being launched alongside the Start menu when searching, and more.

Another issue is the increasing amount of data sharing with Microsoft, with no way to toggle it off unlike Windows 10. And the tech giant has been getting pushier about using its services like being prompted to create a Microsoft account, using OneDrive cloud storage, and being bombarded with messages to give Microsoft Edge a try if you install other browsers instead.

All in all, users seem to be voting with their PCs, and Windows 11 has a ways to go to win a lot of people over.

Allisa James
Computing Staff Writer

Named by the CTA as a CES 2023 Media Trailblazer, Allisa is a Computing Staff Writer who covers breaking news and rumors in the computing industry, as well as reviews, hands-on previews, featured articles, and the latest deals and trends. In her spare time you can find her chatting it up on her two podcasts, Megaten Marathon and Combo Chain, as well as playing any JRPGs she can get her hands on.