About one-third of current Windows users surveyed who are ready to buy a new computer say they will jump ship and switch to an Apple product.
Those are the findings of an unusually broad survey of Windows PC users conducted by antivirus company Avast and released exclusively to USA TODAY.
The survey results underscore lukewarm response to Windows 8, which introduces a radical new PC user interface involving use of a touch screen in addition to a keyboard and mouse.
Avast polled 1.6 million users of its PC anti-virus product the day before Windows 8 officially went on sale, and received 350,000 responses, 135,329 were U.S. Windows users.
Avast’s poll fund that 16% of U.S. Windows users planned to purchase a new computer. While 68% of that group said they would buy a new Windows 8 model PC, 30% reported that they planned to buy an Apple iPad, and 12% an Apple laptop or desktop Mac.
“Many households already have multiple PCs, and people are keeping their computers longer,” observed Jonathan Penn, Avast’s director of strategy. “More people are going to the iPad as their second or third computing device.”
65% of U.S. survey respondents who replied were running Windows 7 on their PCs, while 22% still used the venerable Windows XP, Windows Vista was used by 8% of respondents.
Six out of 10 participants said they were aware of Windows 8, but only 9% said they would buy a new computer just to have Windows 8. More than 70% said they plan to stick with what they currently use.
Corporate customers are expected to be even more hesitant than consumers to embrace Windows 8. Many are still deploying Windows 7 computers.
Karl Volkman, chief technology officer at SRV Network, an Internet service provider, explains one possible drawback of “8” for IT departments who will have to support the updated OS, “The simple adjustment of not having a ‘start’ button will be a hurdle.”