Windows 11 growth slows in March

Windows 11 splash screen
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Windows 11 deployment stalled in March after a strong February, according to the latest report from apps and games promotion network AdDuplex.

Windows 11 usage had grown considerably between January and February, jumping from 16.1% to 19.3%. The latest report shows that it barely moved during the last month, standing at 19.3%.

Instead, the main growth this month was in Windows 10 21H2, which increased its share of the market by 7.5% to 28.5% in March from February's 21%.

Most of this extra share for 21H2 came at the expense of Windows 10 20H2. That version of the OS dropped its share from 17.9% in February to 10.8% in March.

Microsoft released Windows 10 version 21H2 in July last year. It featured support for the WPA3 H2E standard, which increases Wi-Fi security. It also added support for cloud trust, a new technique for setting up its Windows Hello for Business two-factor authentication system that supports simplified passwordless Windows deployments.

Windows 10 21H2 also built GPU support into the Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL), which allows Linux programs to run on the Microsoft operating system.


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Windows 11 has suffered some public image setbacks lately. Microsoft had to fix three remote code execution flaws in the operating system, along with another bug that stopped the system deleting some files.

Other issues that could have held back adoption include the revelation that the company was testing out advertising in the operating system's file explorer. It has also moved ahead with plans to watermark Windows 11 on older PCs, following a confusing policy that limited support for the operating system to newer devices at launch.

Lithuania-based AdDuplex collects its data from 5,000 apps available in the Windows Store. These apps run its SDK, which enable it to see the host operating system' version.

Danny Bradbury

Danny Bradbury has been a print journalist specialising in technology since 1989 and a freelance writer since 1994. He has written for national publications on both sides of the Atlantic and has won awards for his investigative cybersecurity journalism work and his arts and culture writing. 

Danny writes about many different technology issues for audiences ranging from consumers through to software developers and CIOs. He also ghostwrites articles for many C-suite business executives in the technology sector and has worked as a presenter for multiple webinars and podcasts.