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April 26, 2010

3 Things To Know About Our Ecosystem

Any Saturday afternoon you are likely to find me at the local Best Buy or Fry’s. You see, I am a gadget nut and I love finding that next great product that helps me do something new or better. This is, of course, a good thing for the guy who heads up Ecosystem marketing for Windows. A big part of what makes Windows great is the universe of partners around it. My last few purchases (a Wacom Bamboo tablet, a Seagate FreeAgent Go 1TB portable drive, a Netgear WNDR3700 router, a Samsung netbook and a new Microsoft mouse) all have something in common – they all shine with Windows 7. This got me thinking a lot about the great support we are seeing from the ecosystem (something we have talked about before) and how these partners help enhance the Windows experience for all of our users.

When I think about the ecosystem around Windows, three things really stand out for me:

  • The universe of products that support Windows 7 is immense, ranging from PCs and peripheral hardware to consumer, commercial and custom built software.
  • More partners than ever before have achieved the Logo and customers are looking for the logo when they shop for the products.
  • Partners are innovating on Windows 7. New generations of exciting products that leverage Windows 7 keep rolling in.

Last week, we announced sales had reached more than 100 million licenses, which means more people are choosing Windows 7. These people choose Windows in part because the apps and devices they care about simply work. I often get asked to characterize how many products work with Windows 7. The answer is simple – the number is huge. Let’s talk about the hardware first. Thanks to an analysis of a random sample of millions of PC’s that have opted in to participate in telemetry we know that over a quarter of a million devices work with Windows 7.

The universe of software is even larger – that same telemetry shows more than a million applications running on Windows 7 PCs around the world. This software comes from the largest tech industry titans serving tens of thousands of users right to the developer building customer software for their small business. The products people want are ready for Windows 7. Based on NPD and rankings, 14 of the top 15 applications are compatible with Windows 7 – products like WinZip, Turbo Tax, and Microsoft Office. Looking at other key rankings by NPD…

  • 8 out of 10 of the top Accounting applications ranked by US Sales are compatible or have an upgrade to Windows 7 including QuickBooks and Peachtree Accounting
  • 10 out of 10 of the top Games ranked by US Sales are compatible or have an upgrade to Windows 7 including Sims 3, World of Warcraft, and Call of Duty
  • 10 out of 10 of the top Security applications ranked by US Sales are compatible or have an upgrade to Windows 7 including applications from Symantec and Kaspersky

Having millions of things work is one thing, but tens of thousands of products have gone the next step to earn the Compatible with Windows 7 logo. The logo is the sign to the customer that the vendor has tested their product to work well with Windows 7. There are now more products with the Windows 7 Logo than any past Windows logo program. There are nearly 18,000 products that have earned the logo, over 20,000 if you include PCs. That’s 5,000 applications and 13,000 devices and components. This means that all these products have passed our rigorous testing so in any category, you can find a product with the logo. It’s not the small guys either… 10 of the 15 most popular applications sold or downloaded in the US carry the logo. We’re talking all the top names: Intuit, Adobe, Symantec, Canon, Sage, McAfee, Cisco, D-Link, and HP.

With such a broad and vast ecosystem, we also continue to invest in compatibility tools and resources to help customers. We have seen over 15 million downloads of the Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor. That’s larger than the population of Sweden and Singapore combined. IT professionals are also taking advantage of the Windows 7 Application Compatibility list with over 83,000 downloads. We’ve also continued to expand on the Windows 7 Compatibility Center to help people easily check the compatibility of thousands of devices and software programs for 32-bit or 64-bit versions of Windows 7. The site also provides links to drivers and software updates to help get your PC running with Windows 7. The site represents a self-reported sample of applications and devices so it changes every day. With an ecosystem as large as the one around Windows, it is nearly impossible to report on all products, but our goal is to provide the best information on the products people care about most. Since launch, we have seen over 17 million visitors to the Windows 7 Compatibility Center representing 78 million page views.


Finally and perhaps most importantly we continue to see innovation around Windows 7 by our ecosystem partners. If you want amazing products you can find them on Windows. In hardware, Onkyo announced the first Windows 7 compatible A/V receivers and now there are great products like the WD TV Live that enable Play To in legacy devices, the new Toshiba TV (the first TV to earn the logo), and Sierra Wireless announcing Device Stage support for all their Aircard line of products. Not only do all of these products carry the Compatible with Windows 7 logo, but they enhance your Windows experience in compelling ways. In software, more applications are taking advantage of unique features in Windows 7. The team at is testing a next generation Windows 7 comic book reader, Seesmic created Look a twist on how people can access Twitter, Winzip 14.5 beta (update: just released today) has added the Windows Ribbon, even Google and Mozilla have added support for Jump Lists in their browsers.

Huge support, the most products with the Logo and new innovations – all reasons why I am excited about what our partners are doing. I like to call it “Ecosystem Awesomeness”.