Windows 10 powering 270M devices; anniversary update coming for free
Microsoft delegates take a selfie photograph during the launch of the Windows 10 operating system in Kenya's capital Nairobi, July 29, 2015.REUTERS/Thomas Mukoya

Microsoft surprised many last year by making its new operating system, the Windows 10, available for free. Those who want to upgrade to the new OS for free should do it before July 29 as the company will start charging for it thereafter.

"The free upgrade offer to Windows 10 was a first for Microsoft, helping people upgrade faster than ever before. And time is running out. The free upgrade offer will end on July 29 and we want to make sure you don't miss out. After July 29th, you'll be able to continue to get Windows 10 on a new device, or purchase a full version of Windows 10 Home for $119," Yusuf Mehdi, corporate vice-president of Microsoft's Windows and Devices Group, wrote in a blog post on Thursday. 

Microsoft released Windows 10 to all compatible PCs on July 29, 2015, and it was available for free. The company had announced at the time of launch of the OS that the free upgrade offer would end after one year.

[Read: Windows 10 Free Upgrade: Simple Steps To Update Your PC With Microsoft's New OS ]

Yusuf Mehdi said that Windows 10 is now running on 300 million active devices around the world as it nears one year anniversary. He added that over 63 billion minutes were spent on Microsoft Edge in March alone, with 50 percent growth in minutes since the last quarter, and over 9 billion hours of gameplay on Windows 10 since launch.

"We're seeing people at home, at schools, at small businesses, at large companies, and other organizations adopt Windows 10 faster than ever, and use Windows 10 more than ever before," wrote Yusuf Mehdi.

Microsoft's Windows OS may dominate PCs, but its share in the mobile sector is small compared to Google Android and Apple iOS. The Windows 10 mobile too has failed to make an impact with Microsoft not making it available on a wide scale.

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