Win 7 moved ~30,000,000 in month one. Upgrades were $120 - 220/upgrade.
Vista moved 20,000,000 first month. Upgrades were $129 - 299.
MSFT is offering the DVD-version of Windows 8 for ~$30/more per copy so let's just pretend that the fair price for comparison of Windows 8 is $69.99 (since I assume far more physical media went out of Win 7 in 2009).
So that's still 1/2 the revenue per upgrade they collected in the previous cycles.
Looking at their revenue by division Windows & Win Live have been on the decline:
I wonder how drastically this will impact them - if they see a real, sustained gain in traction vs. Windows 7 adoption in the 25% range, that's not going to make up for the shortfall in revenues but certainly would help to lay a foundation for future growth in mobile / server & tools / business / etc.
I'm not sure I even have a point, just trying to sort through this data and get a sense of what it means for MSFT macro.
But I believe Microsoft knows what they are doing, cause the upgrade assistance does not check if you are running a legit version. It either means they were too trusting that users will be running legit versions before upgrading or it means that they deliberately left this hole in order to get a revenue from users who would otherwise just install a pirated version of their new OS.
Are there any specific anti-piracy measures you're referring to, or just the presence of them?
 see http://www.tomshardware.com/news/windows-7-upgrade-discount-..., for instance
It is intriguing though.
Lower prices with shorter release cycle = same revenue.
Anecdotal, but even the dyed in wool Windows guys I know (gamers, .net programmers, etc.) were slow to upgrade to Vista and Windows 7. $120-$300 upgrades that didn't improve performance were hard to justify - the money was probably better spent on graphics cards and games.
So the lower price for upgrades will not have a huge impact on MS's revenue (or profit).
 e.g., http://shop.lenovo.com/SEUILibrary/controller/e/web/LenovoPo...
That's 10% of the total in the first three days to existing users.
Instead of using the Windows 8 Pro software, you may use one of the following earlier versions: Windows 7 Professional or Windows Vista Business.
This agreement applies to your use of the earlier versions. If the earlier version includes different components, any terms for those components in the agreement that come with the earlier version apply to your use of such components. Neither the manufacturer or installer, nor Microsoft, is obligated to supply earlier versions to you. You must obtain the earlier version separately. At any time, you may replace an earlier version with Windows 8 Pro.
Oh yeah, I also failed the recapcha several times before I could even get into the computer in the first place. A recapcha when you're first starting... brilliant. Btw, I'm not an MS hater but I am a Windows 8 hater.
Eight Goddamned partitions. What the hell.
Trusted by whom?
How many licenses are sitting with OEMs? If retails sales are below expectations the channel may have over purchased and items are sitting on the shelf.
How many sales are through enterprise agreements? These sales may be a bundle of licenses for different products. It is not unusual industry practice to throw in, for next to nothing, products that for strategic reasons, need to have sales numbers inflated. Or the enterprises may have purchased the license because they are contractually obligated to buy the latest desktop OS version.
It would seem odd to me if they created some new metric that we couldn't compare with Win7 and Vista sales.
Since what they mean has never been defined there is no metric. They could quite easily have changed what's being measured and no one would be the wiser.
The former is uninteresting. The latter would be great, but MS doesn't know this info (and they've never reported it).
And the channel I suspect is pretty efficient when it comes to license acquisition, since you don't need to do runs like you do in HW.
Win8 seems to be doing in the ballpark (if not better) than Win7 in sales.