500M Windows 10 devices, half of 2018 goal

Microsoft has hit a milestone with the announcement that its Windows 10 consumer OS is now running on 500 million active devices.

In retrospect, Windows 10 had about 400 Million back in September pointing at a steady growth throughout the nearly two years.

The endgame of the drive for a billion users is convincing iPhone and Android app developers that Windows 10 has enough users to be worth their time. That's up from 400 million disclosed in September 2016, but far short of Microsoft's stated goal of 1 billion by 2018.

Still, Microsoft itself has moved the goalposts a little bit here. Windows 10 took almost 21 months to reach this number which in fact, makes it the quickest desktop operating system to do so.

Predictably, Windows 10 share growth has slowed quite a bit since the Redmond-based giant stopped offering free upgrades from older operating systems. According to The Verge, Microsoft has been "loosely targeting" 550 million active users every month by the end of next month and 575 million by the end of September.

To Microsoft's credit, it's making some savvy moves to grow Windows 10: New devices like the Surface Studio PC and Surface Book laptop are wooing away Apple superfans who feel jilted by the latest MacBooks, while the forthcoming Surface Laptop looks to attract students, too.

Be sure to check in with InfoQ throughout the day for more news and updates from this year's Build 2017 conference. The company has confirmed that more than 500 million machines across the globe are now running Windows 10.

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