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Microsoft reveals Windows 8.1 pricing, brings back 'full version' for everyone

 

While Windows 8.1 is a free update for Windows 8 users, those running older versions of Microsoft's desktop operating system will have to purchase an upgrade to the latest edition. Microsoft is revealing today that the basic Windows 8.1 upgrade edition will cost $119.99, with the Pro version priced at $199.99. The prices are identical to the existing upgrade costs today, although Microsoft clearly isn't offering any promotional pricing on upgrades like it did last year for Windows 8.

Microsoft is also planning to change the way it sells copies of Windows 8.1. With Windows 8 you had to buy an upgrade edition online or at retail stores, and the company never offered full versions. Windows 8.1 will be offered at retail or via the download option in what the company calls "full version software." The change is in response to feedback around scenarios where people want to build PCs or run Windows 8.1 in virtual environments. If you buy a copy of Windows 8.1 then it's a full version, rather than simply an upgrade edition.

 

If you're planning to upgrade to Windows 8.1 from XP or Vista then there's some slight changes this time around. Microsoft supported basic upgrade paths from XP and Vista to Windows 8, keeping files and settings in Vista's case, but it's killing that off with Windows 8.1. If you have Windows XP or Windows Vista and you want to move to Windows 8.1 directly then you'll need to complete a clean install. Microsoft says this is because "Windows 8.1 is not designed for installation on devices running Windows XP or Windows Vista." Those particular users will have to buy a DVD from retail stores instead of the online download option.

 

As a number of Windows 8.1 machines will ship from October 18th onwards, Microsoft is also offering ways to upgrade from the basic editions to the Pro and Windows Media Center editions. Those who purchase hardware with just the basic edition can upgrade to Windows 8.1 Pro for $99.99, and Pro users can get Windows Media Center for $9.99. Windows 8.1 will hit the Windows Store for existing users on October 17th in a number of regions, and devices and retail DVDs will launch on October 18th.

 

Source: The Verge

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Posted

Good move to finally just sell "one" copy of 8.1 that is both a full/upgrade copy. Having both distinct full and upgrade versions just made pricing and understanding SKUs more confusing than it had to be.

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Posted

Now if Microsoft can distribute official images that would be awesome.

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Posted

Good move to finally just sell "one" copy of 8.1 that is both a full/upgrade copy. Having both distinct full and upgrade versions just made pricing and understanding SKUs more confusing than it had to be.


Uh... They're adding a new full version SKU, not removing or merging anything.

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Posted

That's exactly what I was referring to. They are finally selling a version that is both an upgrade and a full version. Seems before, you were almost always limited to some kind of upgrade version if you bought a retail copy.

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Posted

No, there wast he OEM version to, and the upgrade was a full install as well. And for builders OEM is what they want anyway.

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Posted

Windows 8 only had "upgrade" versions in retail, iirc.  The system builder option wasn't at retail,  at least not on a shelf.  Anyways, there's no need to sell a retail box for Full and Upgrade separately like they used to, now it's just one Full version box that can do an upgrade if you want.

 

Also just having core and Pro is better than all the versions they had back with Vista.   I expected them to do some sort of limited time promotion for 8.1 though, but I guess since they're giving it for free to 8.0 users that's their deal.    Also, if they can keep going with this yearly Windows update cycle then I see no reason why the full retail pricing won't stat to come down over time.     If 8.2 comes next year then we could see it for $99 for the full core version and $150 for full pro instead of $199.

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