The Ultimate Question Answered

On Sunday, I observed that Windows Vista Ultimate isn't much available on new PCs. There may be good reasons.

Not much has changed today, the first day people can actually buy Vista Ultimate preloaded on new PCs. By and large, major manufacturers and retailers are sticking to Windows Basic and Windows Vista Home Premium. Now why is that?

I asked that question to analysts and Microsoft executives yesterday during Microsoft's Vista partner launch, and I got some surprising answers.

Cost weighed in as a major consideration, along with driver compatibility and potential customers (Microsoft expects bigger initial retail box sales of Ultimate than PC preloads). All three factors are legitimate reasons, and all three are likely right. Together they raise questions about whether Microsoft's version strategy simply doesn't make sense.

Ultimate's ultimate pricing--$399 for full-version retail and $259 for an upgrade--is an obvious purchase barrier. Microsoft doesn't release OEM pricing, but Dell, Gateway and HP add-on pricing--$170, $160 and $120, respectively--gives some perspective. The add-on pricing is on top of what the customer already pays for Windows Vista Home Premium.

View: Full Article @ eWeek, Microsoft Watch

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Only $399 for Ultimate full? so why the hell in italy it costs €550 = $710 !!!???

anyway, through the university MSDNAA i've got a free Vista Business license.

Heh, so do I, though would be bettter for my laptop if it was ultimate so I could get some better media stuff and all the features. Anyone know if MSDNAA students are stuck with just getting free business?

Ultimate only has pointless crap on top of Business, like the totally useless Ultimate Extra. The only thing that could be halfway useable, the Drive Encryption, doesn't even work properly.
That's why smart people only get Business and don't waste money on Ultimate.

ramik said,
Only $399 for Ultimate full? so why the hell in italy it costs €550 = $710 !!!???

It's the same with Germany, the UK and other countries, just as pricey :suspicious:
Simply get the Oem version.

By and large, major manufacturers and retailers are sticking to Windows Basic and Windows Vista Home Premium. Now why is that?

Lol, I had to read that like 3 times.

Surely the majority of users who will be buying a PC through Dell, or some other OEM, will be perfectly happy with Home Basic / Home Premium. They wont be power users or the like who "just have to have" the latest and greatest feature set included in Ultimate.

For those of us who do however wish to purchase Ultimate, you can buy the 64 bit version (OEM of course) for only £109 http://www.komplett.co.uk/k/ki.asp?sku=331433.

The full retail version is 3 times that price:

http://www.komplett.co.uk/k/ki.asp?sku=330371.

Yes, Ultimate is probably too expensive for home use at least, except for those with special needs and a ton of cash.
At my work, I also can't imagine using Ultimate; Business is perfect for us.

This is news because???

So Ultimate Edition is expensive?
So Ultimate Edition is not being supplied by default?

The clue is in the name and the price, it isn't meant to be version that everyone uses. Most people and businesses will never need it.

Ultimate OEM is $219, about $80 more than Home Premium.

Upgrading from Home Premium to Ultimate on Anytime Upgrade is $160 retail.

You do the math.

Ultimate OEM is actually closer to $200 OEM. All of my distributors are showing $199-$205'ish for either the 32-bit or 64-bit version. $219 is a bit high.

Wow, that was very poorly written. Someone better call in the grammar police.

Ultimate isn't selling well for one reason alone....it costs $400 (it's $499 CAN !!!!).

someone better call the reading police!!!!

you're commenting on an article about the oem version of ultimate by stating the retail price

This gotta stop.... all these debates about ULTIMATE edition pricing... those who want it will buy it... those who don't won't....

Just as long as home premium pricing is sensible, I couldn't care less about the pricing of ultimate editions and such as they will always be overpriced in any product and in any category

There is only one legitimate version of Vista, Ultimate. It's what all the ads are selling feature wise, etc. etc.

All of the rest are MBA 101 market segmentation cripple-ware. MS should do what Apple does...one version for all. This is a stupid overpriced outdated system...period.

As long as this ridiculousness continues, you'll be hearing myself and others shouting about it anywhere we can.

excalpius said,
There is only one legitimate version of Vista, Ultimate. It's what all the ads are selling feature wise, etc. etc.

All of the rest are MBA 101 market segmentation cripple-ware. MS should do what Apple does...one version for all. This is a stupid overpriced outdated system...period.

As long as this ridiculousness continues, you'll be hearing myself and others shouting about it anywhere we can. :)

car makers should also only sell 1 model. damn you microsoft!