Microsoft plans to drop extended support for Windows 8.1, introduced in 2013, just one year after Microsoft released Windows 8. And two years later, Windows 10 followed.
Microsoft ended mainstream support for Windows 8.1 on January 9, 2018 and plans to suspend extended support on January 10, 2023. After that, the company will no longer provide software updates and technical support for the OS. The Extended Security Update Program for Windows 8.1 will also be discontinued. Anyone running it after the cut-off date will be exposed to future security risks.
According to StatCounter, Windows 8.1 had a mere 2.45% share of the global desktop market as of October 2022. In comparison, Windows 7 is still used on 9.61% of desktops. Windows 11 is used by 15.44% of PCs and Windows 10 leads with a market share of 71.29%.
Microsoft recommends that Windows 8.1 devices be upgraded to the latest version of Windows 10 or Windows 11. Windows 10 Home and Pro are still available and will be supported until October 14, 2025. Windows 11 is not yet for everyone due to technical limitations.
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If a device doesn’t meet the minimum requirements of a newer OS, Microsoft suggests replacing it with something newer. It’s better to immediately upgrade to something with support for Windows 11 so that you don’t have to worry about the end of support for the system again in three years.
Windows 11 took only 15% of the desktop PC market in a year – Windows 10 remains the leader with a share of 71.29%
Source: tech spot