Windows 8 upgrade to be download only in China

If you live in China and want to upgrade your PC to Windows 8, your only avenue will be to purchase a downloadable copy of the OS. Microsoft has confirmed that it won't be selling physical box copies of Windows 8 in that country, unlike here in the US, where boxed copies will still be available in stores for $69.99.

PCWorld.com reports that, according to a statement from Microsoft, "After having talked to many customers, Microsoft has made the decision to simplify the distribution model of Windows in China, by taking all physical Windows media off the market."

This move was likely made to try to at least slow down efforts to pirate Windows 8 in China. The country is pretty notorious for not only being the home of a lot of pirated software but also of a lack of copyright enforcement by China's government. The Business Software Alliance claims that legal software sales generated just $3 billion in revenue in 2011, while pirated software sales are estimated at three times that amount.

Even though Windows 8 won't launch officially until Friday, at least one pirate software store in Shanghai was selling what it called "Windows 8 Ultimate" in a box. The truth? The OS is the release preview version of Windows 8 which anyone can download for free.

Source: PCWorld.com | Image via Microsoft

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15 Comments

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I can't believe the chinese government. I'm sick of reading about where all of their efforts go and then read an article like this and hear that they aren't bothered by piracy.

Looks like they have employees who don't have a clue as to how these things work. No physical media will control piracy....really?! All they have to do is download the ISO and burn a master copy, then shove that into a disc duplicator and make thousands of copies!

The Dark Knight said,
Looks like they have employees who don't have a clue as to how these things work. No physical media will control piracy....really?! All they have to do is download the ISO and burn a master copy, then shove that into a disc duplicator and make thousands of copies!

The advantage of having downladables that are NOT burned onto physical media is that each copy can easily be individually serialised. Duplicates will not be able to activate.

Lets see how long it takes the kiddies at Zhongguancun to bust this.

The Dark Knight said,
Already done...KMS activation!

Yeah, I know it is only for 180 days, but there will be a permanent solution out in no time. It is inevitable.

Yeah, you keep thinking that.

One more day before the 26th for Win 8 release, can't wait to install it when my package arrives.