Although many PC users are still satisfied with their Windows XP experience, Microsoft was proud to announce that it has shipped 60 million copies of its Windows Vista operating system.
In particular, Microsoft boasted that it had quickly surpassed the entire install base of another computer maker that’s better known these days for its music players. "By our math, we eclipsed the entire install base of Apple in the first five weeks of shipment," said Kevin Turner, Microsoft's COO.
While 60 million copies would be an impressive number for any other software maker, an operating system from Microsoft must aspire to reach completely new heights. Microsoft isn’t simply looking at millions of units – it’s looking at the billions.
"The install base of Windows computers this coming 12 months will reach one billion," said Steve Ballmer, Microsoft's CEO. "If you stop and think about that for a second, by end of our fiscal year '08 there will be more PCs running Windows in the world than there are automobiles, which to me is kind of a mind-numbing concept."
Earlier this year, shortly after the launch of Windows Vista, Ballmer blamed piracy for the operating system’s sluggish start, while also viewing the stop of illegal activity as a chance to grow sales. "Piracy reduction can be a source of Windows revenue growth, and I think we'll make some piracy improvements this year," Ballmer said.
Shortly after Ballmer's comments, Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates was more upbeat and stated that Vista had been "incredibly well received." Gates continued, "People who sell PCs have seen a very nice lift in their sales. People have come in and wanted to buy Vista."