Late Monday Microsoft revealed details about the versions of Windows 8 it plans to offer late this year, announcing in a blog post that it will sell three editions for Intel PCs – Windows 8, Windows 8 Pro, Windows 8 Enterprise – and one – Windows 8 RT (formally known as Windows on ARM) – for ARM-based devices.
In contrast, Windows 7 was offered in six editions.
“We have worked to make it easier for customers to know what edition will work best for them when they purchase a new Windows PC or upgrade their existing PC,” said Microsoft’s Brandon LeBlanc.
The upgradability of Windows 8 will be limited depending on what OS the consumer is currently using. Users of Windows 7 Starter, Home Basic, and Home Premium will be able to upgrade to Windows 8 or Windows 8 Pro. Windows 7 Professional and Ultimate users, however, will only be eligible to upgrade to Windows 8 Pro.
In order to combat piracy in developing markets, Microsoft offered a “Home Basic” edition of Windows 7 at a lower price point. With regards to the possibility of such an edition for Windows 8 Mr. LeBlanc said, “For China and a small set of select emerging markets, we will offer a local language-only edition of Windows 8,” perhaps leaving open the door to Basic- or Starter-style versions.
Microsoft has yet to disclose pricing details for any of Windows 8’s editions.
Tags: windows 8