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Microsoft Windows 8 upgrade priced at $39.99

technologyEdward KiledjianComment

Apple customers have had fantastic upgrade pricing for the last couple of years. While they were paying less than $30 (Lion was $29.99 and the new Mountain Lion will be $19.99) for their OS upgrades, most Windows users ended up shelling close to $100 to upgrade to Windows7. Many of us anxiously waited to see if Microsoft would respond.

We can all sleep easy, knowing that the next major Microsoft OS upgrade (Pro version) will cost $39.99 in 131 markets. Anyone who buys a new PC starting now until February 2013, will be eligible to buy Windows 8 Pro for $15. This is a major change for Redmond but is likely based on sound business principles. 

  • By pricing the upgrade so competitively, they are enticing consumers, even those who did not upgrade from Windows XP or Vista, to upgrade to Windows 8. 
  • They want consumers to move to the Pro version of Windows 8 (which is the version with all these great offers)
  • Obviously they want their new desktop model (no start button) Metro interface and Microsoft App Store to be quickly adopted by consumers in huge numbers.

This special price will be available for customers buying the digital download version during the initial promotional period (ending January 31, 2013). The DVD version will sell for $69.99 during this promotion.

Many pundits have said Windows 8 is designed for tablets and is of no use to traditional mouse-based computer users. They said Windows 8 is doomed to fail (similar to Vista).  

Others have come out supporting Windows 8, saying it moves us into a new computing paradigm that better matches how we use our PCs today. I have played with windows 8 a little and agree that it will take some getting use to but it’s not bad. To be honest, coming back to Windows 7 (on my production computer) feels wrong and awkward. I think Microsoft is on the right track and can’t wait for the final version.

Microsoft provides upgrade instructions on its blog here.