Dell: Windows 7 pricing is a potential obstacle for users

We've learned a vast amount about Windows 7 over the last few months, but there's still one thing that's been bothering those in the technology world (and even those not in it): pricing. How much will Windows 7 cost users? Nobody can be sure, but Dell doesn't seem too keen on it, according to CNET. They're reporting that Darrel Ward, the director of product management for Dell's business client product group, is a bit concerned on how high the new operating system from Microsoft will cost.

"If there's one thing that may influence adoption, make things slower or cause customers to pause, it's that generally the average selling price of the operating systems are higher than they were for Vista and XP," he said. "In tough economic times, I think it's naive to believe that you can increase your prices on average and then still see a strong swell than if you held prices flat or even lowered them. I can tell you that the licensing tiers at retail are more expensive than they were for Vista." This is rather troubling when you think about it, especially because Ward believes that it may cause delays for schools, government agencies and smaller businesses in terms of upgrading. He stated that they may not be able to afford the "additional cost".

Aside from pricing, Dell seems very keen on Windows 7. "We do have a visible number of customers, large and small, who are actually waiting for Windows 7 and who have already put plans in place to target the transition to Windows 7, they're asking Dell for help. That demand and this opportunity is stronger than it has been in the past," stated Ward, and he also strongly supports Windows 7's XP Mode. "It's one of the things that Microsoft is doing that we think is helpful. Putting an instance of XP virtual machine in the higher end SKUs. This is another alternative for compatibility. We'll fully support that in our product and consulting services."

Adding to this, Dell says that other things are looking much better too, like driver support. It's shaping up to be a much healthier launch than Vista, and we hope that pricing won't be too bad.

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