Microsoft today made their Windows 7 pricing policies official.
The bad news is they didn’t change much, and are still too expensive in my opinion. There’s a slight reduction on Home Premium pricing (over the similar edition in Vista) but that’s it. I think Microsoft could have (and should have) done better, but time will tell. Most of the Windows 7 licenses will come from new PCs anyway — as opposed to boxed retail sales — so perhaps this doesn’t matter as much.
Despite the bad news, there is much good news:
- First and foremost, the rumor of short-term upgrade deals is true. From June 26 to July 11, one can order an upgrade to Windows 7 Home Premium online for only $49 (and Professional for $99). I’m disappointed that the window of opportunity is only 16 days, but it’s a no-brainer deal, so snap it up.
- Anyone who buys a new PC from June 26 until the end of January gets a free corresponding update to Windows 7. As I mentioned before, this covers a lot of the back to school season, and makes buying a PC “safe” for anyone starting tomorrow.
I can’t help but wonder if the short 16-day window for the special upgrade pricing won’t be extended, allowing Microsoft to act magnanimous, and get some free good press in the process. Not a bad idea, and it helps everyone. It’ll be interesting to see if we get any pricing announcements from Microsoft as we near Jule 11.
No matter, any current Vista user should hit their PC and order the upgrade for the special pricing starting June 26. There is no question Window 7 is a $49 improvement over Vista.