Windows 8.1? Windows 8.1!

Windows 8.1 has been publicly released more than six months ago. For all Windows 8 users, Windows 8.1 is a free update (free as in free beer). And since it’s distributed via the Windows Store, the update is as simple as installing a Windows 8 app.

By now, all Windows 8 users will have done the update, right? Wrong!

As of this week, Windows 8 still accounts for one third of all bitsofMine downloads. One third! So if I withdraw the Windows 8 version from the store, I will remove support for one third of all people visiting the store. I honestly hate to do so.

But reality is, I am not supporting Windows 8 users anymore: for the last four months, new features only find their way into the Windows 8.1 version. And so do bug fixes. While I would love to support all Windows 8 and Windows RT users, I just don’t have the means to do so. And I’m sure most of my developer colleagues face the same problem.

I am sure that each and everyone who hasn’t done the Windows 8.1 update will have one or more serious reasons for not doing so. Yet, all these users have to deal with an outdated operating system and outdated apps! In many cases, they might not even be aware of that…

Yes, I still think that Windows 8.1 (formerly known as Windows 8) is a great operating system. But confronting one third of its users with an inferior experience is impacting perception unnecessarily.

Dear Microsoft: Whatever prevents your customers from doing the migration from Windows 8 to Windows 8.1: Fix it! And now would be a good time!