October 14, 2025 is the date when Microsoft officially ends support for Windows 10. While the migration to Windows 11 is the next logical step in progression, it could end up creating a lot of waste, notes research firm Canalys. The firm estimates that “in the nearly two-year period until Microsoft’s official end-of-support date for Windows 10 – 14 October 2025 – roughly a fifth of devices will become e-waste due to incompatibility with the Windows 11 OS.” The number? A staggering 240 million PCs.However, it is not all doom and gloom as chances are not all the machines will end up being waste. “Most of these 240 million PCs, if in good condition, could at least be recycled, but their incompatibility with the latest supported version of Windows massively reduces their value for refurbishing and reselling,” said Canalys in the report.
A lot of these PCs will be usable for years but “demand for devices no longer supported by Microsoft will be minimal – even companies with the tightest of IT budgets will be deterred by the lack of free and continued security updates,” Canalys noted in the report.

What Microsoft can do

Microsoft issued a statement announcing that Extended Security Updates for Windows 10 will be available until October 2028 – albeit for a currently unspecified annual fee. So if users pay a certain amount then the company will give security updates for another three years. This approach is not new for Microsoft, which also offered paid Extended Security Updates for Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 until January 2023, according to Canalys.
The pricing plans for Windows 7’s extended support began at US$25 per PC for the first year of support, quadrupling to US$100 annually in the third and final year of Extended Security Updates. “If Microsoft pursues a similar pricing structure for Windows 10’s extended support, the more cost-effective option will be migration to newer, Windows 11-capable PCs – forcing older PCs onto the scrapheap,” added Canalys.

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