Sunday, October 26, 2014

Can Microsoft offer Windows 10 as a free update to Windows 8?

Windows 10 is seen in this screenshot. AP
The technical preview of Windows 10 (and not Windows 9) is out. It is still an unfinished version and doesn’t include most of the features that will eventually make it to the final cut. Moreover, the company has ample of time to add tweaks changes to suit the needs of different consumers before users can upgrade. Unlike Windows 8, Windows 10 has so far met with a good response from tech critics, too.  Now, the key question is – will it be made available for free?
While Microsoft hasn’t officially announced any details about the pricing or whether it will be available for free, there has been buzz about the OS coming as a free upgrade to Windows 8 users. Unlike other OSes, Microsoft’s OS has always come with a price tag. However, looks like the company is ready for change. It did set a precedent by offering the Windows 8.1 upgrade for free, something it has never done before.
According to the Indonesian news site,  Andreas Diantoro, the president of Microsoft Indonesia had ‘confirmed’ that ‘Windows 9′ (now named Windows 10) will be a free upgrade for all Windows 8 users. So we know that Microsoft has at least considered that as an option.
And, why not? After the not-so-pleasant experience with adapting to the not-so-user-friendly Windows 8 UI, a free upgrade could definitely serve as an incentive to win back a bunch of disillusioned users. Windows 8 wasn’t widely accepted and, to an extent, detested by many. It was also the reason why many chose not to upgrade from Windows 7. It should be noted that Windows 10 is an attempt at bringing back the Windows 7 feel with the return of the Start menu and several other useful tweaks. However, Microsoft has also retained some features from Windows 8, which it felt were moderately accepted.
Above it all, free updates are not a new thing anymore. Mobile OSes such as iOS, Android have always been made available for free. With OS X Mavericks, even Apple started rolling out free Mac OS updates for free for the time. A free update to the Windows 10 OS might just work in Microsoft’s favour, if the company is desperate to recover from the bad mojo set by Windows 8. But is it desperate enough?

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