Microsoft Windows debuted in 1985 and for the past two decades it has been the dominant PC operating system worldwide. In 2020, Windows had almost 83% market share by unit shipments, while Google Chrome OS had 10% and Apple’s Mac OS had 7%, according to Gartner.
From solitaire to its iconic start button and start up sounds, productivity apps, gaming and corporate computing, Windows changed the way we use computers. The legendary Windows 95 helped propel the company to dominate the market in personal computing. Microsoft has introduced many versions of Windows since its inception with some more memorable than others.
It’s competed with IBM, Apple, and Google for market space. According to Microsoft, there are more than 1.3 billion devices running Windows 10 worldwide on a monthly basis.
Today, Windows only makes up 14% of Microsoft’s business but remains a critical part of it. The company just announced the latest version Windows 11.
CNBC spoke with former Microsoft employees including Terry Myerson, Michael Cherry, Brad Silverberg and Tandy Trower to get a look back at over three decades of Windows.