2009 has been a year of consolidation for OpenOffice.org in Italy, as you can easily see from the histogram (2007 is blue, 2008 is red, 2009 is yellow).
Downloads have reached a record figure of 7.865.008, with a 46% increase over 2008. For the first time since the first days of the project, the growth has slowed down (as it was logical to expect, given the size of the Italian market).
Downloads in December 2009 have been lower than in December 2008. The reason is simple: in 2008 we were flying after the announcement of OOo 3.0 (a major release, with new features), while in 2009 we were at the fourth month of OOo 3.1.1 (a bug fixing release).
In 2009, there have been three releases of OpenOffice.org. This means that users have had a maximum of three opportunities to download the suite (not taking into account multiple installations from a single download, CDs and Linux repositories).
Assuming that each user has downloaded OOo three times (which is not the case, as user support questions reveal that there are people still using 2.x or 3.0 releases), this means that the Italian version of OpenOffice.org has had 2.621.669,33 active users in Italy during 2009.
Italians using OOo in English, French, German, Slovenian and Furlan (the last four being official languages) are on top of these figures. We will have a rough idea of their number starting from version 3.2, when the counter will give IPs to their geography.
Unfortunately, we will never know how many people install OpenOffice.org from USB keys, CDs and Linux repositories. Analysts have the challenging task of providing an updated figure for office suites market share.
Let’s only say that OOo in Europe has reached a market share big enough to get on the radar screen of Microsoft US, and to be considered a concern for Steve B. (who is recruiting a marketing guy to tame the community).
2010 is going to be exciting. OpenOffice.org will announce the 3.2 release, with major new features and performance improvements, and the 3.3 release. The OOoConference will be in Budapest in September, and I plan to be there.