Gartner Projects 42 percent of PCs Worldwide Will Run Windows 7 in 2011
Researcher Expects 94 percent of new PCs will ship with Windows 7 by years end.
The researcher projected that some 94 percent of new PCs will be shipped with the Windows 7 operating system in 2011.
By comparison, shipments of Apple Computer Inc.s iMacs and the Mac OS, which rose from a 3.3 percent share of new PCs worldwide to 4 percent in 2010, is forecast to rise to 4.5 percent in 2011 and reach 5.2 percent of new PC shipments by 2015, Gartner said.
"By the end of 2011, nearly 635 million new PCs worldwide are expected to be shipped with Windows 7, said Annette Jump, Gartner research director.
Jump credited improving IT budgets in the U.S. and Asia-Pacific regions this year and last for boosting Windows 7 deployments but cautioned that an uncertain economic climate in Western Europe, a slowdown in Japan and political considerations in the Middle East and Africa could retard growth of the operating system installed base in those geographic areas.
Many enterprises have been planning their deployment of Windows 7 for the last 12 to 18 months, and are now moving rapidly to Windows 7," she said.
Jump said that Apples growth has outpaced the market average in the last two years and attributed the uptick in Mac PCs and Mac OS in part to the easy integration with the vendors iPhone, iPad and applications and programs.
Gartner said that it expects the Linux OS to remain a small player over the next five years with its share less than two percent of the market owing to high migration costs from Windows.
The researcher said that it does not believe that Chrome OS, Android or webOS will gain noticeable share on PCs in the next few years.
By 2012, up to 50 percent of applications run by businesses will be OS-agnostic, Gartner projected. With consumers, Gartner believes that critical mass already has been reached for OS-agnostic applications, which could help Chrome OS and Android gain ground on Windows in the next few years.
Gartner said that its Windows 7 forecast assumes that it will be the last version of the operating system that gets deployed through corporate upgrades. The researcher said that it expects many organizations to also use alternative client computing architectures for PCs with Windows OS and move to virtualization and the cloud in the next five years.