Windows 7 – Take Your Pick!

Microsoft is planning to offer Vista2 Windows7 in six versions – sound familiar?

Son-of-Vista will come in six flavors:

  1. Windows 7 Starter Edition: Targeted for notebooks and available only through OEMs; this is “crippleware” – you can only run three apps at the same time
  2. Windows 7 Home Basic: For “emerging markets” entry level PCs through OEMs
  3. Windows 7 Home Premium: The choice for most home users – this is where the eye-candy kicks in, such as Aero Glass and touch-screen
  4. Windows 7 Professional: One step up from Home Premium, similar to XP Pro
  5. Windows 7 Ultimate: The works
  6. Windows 7 Enterprise: For large corporate customers – not available retail or though OEMs.

Out of the six flavors, looks like the consumer’s choice is really limited to options 3, 4 and 5. No pricing information yet but don’t expect less than $100; expect to see a W7 launch late this year or early 2010. Also announced for XP users – there will be an upgrade available; BTW – this is a clean install which means all your data and programs will be wiped.

I speculated HERE that the most likely netbook OS from M$ would be Windows 7 Lite and that’s what Windows 7 Starter Edition shapes up to be. I do find it interesting that M$ would rather issue crippleware than compete with a netbook OS that is at least as good as Ubuntu – IMHO Ubuntu and other Linux variants are looking to be more credible for netbooks in this scenario, not the least of which is the cost issue.

For current XP users, I don’t think you have to make a decision on this for some time to come – there’s a couple of articles on extending XP’s life worth taking a close look:

M$ still faces a critical purchasing hurdle – is W7 so much better than XP that the installed base will convert en masse? Maybe it’s me, but I see no compelling reason to jump to W7 if the only perceived advantage for XP users is some eye-candy. Consumers buying a new PC have no option but to go with W7 – XP downgrades will not be an option.

The other factor to consider: A global economy in a severe downward spiral.

I put all this together and aside from new PC sales, I think the W7 ramp is not going to be all that strong; the corporate XP installed base is a wild-card, with IT offices looking at the bottom line and wondering what W7 will bring to the table. Personally, I’m on hold.

About Joe Citarella 242 Articles
Joe Citarella was one of the founders of in 1998. He contributed as a site administrator and writer for over 10 years before retiring. Joe played an integral part in building and sustaining the community.

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