On January 21st, Microsoft had a huge media event to showcase and announce what’s next for Windows. You may recall that months previous to this, Microsoft stunned their followers by skipping Windows 9 (the logical next step from Windows 8.1), and going straight to Windows 10.
We’ve had some time to digest that news and the next thing we were wondering was ‘will the upgrade cost?’ Now, quite a bit has been revealed and the big news is that those who are currently running Windows 7, Windows 8 or Windows 8.1 will be able to upgrade to Windows 10 for free.
Windows 10 – The Fine Print
When we’re getting something for free, we think there may be a ‘catch’. To get Microsoft Windows 10, here are the three stipulations:
- You must be running Windows 7, Windows 8 or Windows 8.1 (any version is fine).
- You must agree that when you take the free upgrade, you are then allowing Microsoft to deliver updates for free, for as long as you own your device.
- You must upgrade within the first year that Windows 10 is released.
The people following and writing about Windows full-time are talking about the phrase above, ‘Windows as a service’. Will Windows become something we have to annually or monthly pay for going forward? Can we still buy a copy of Windows at the store or via a download and install on a particular machine or device? If we get a new computer, can we transfer it if we wish? These are questions not being answered yet by Microsoft.
Microsoft is saying that Windows 10 will be the last major upgrade and that this OS will be used on any type of device – even the Windows Phones. Instead of future large updates, they will be released as they are ready. This is the case currently for those of us with Office 365 or Microsoft Home & Office. Updates are pushed out as they are ready since these are monthly services.
In the tech world, things continually are changing. Adobe has gone to a subscription service for much of its software. Much of the software we use now is web-based and we pay for it monthly. Think about Go-To-Meeting, Hootsuite, Logmein and more. So some think it makes sense to have Windows transition to this type of service. In a way, I like to have a disk and really ‘own’ my software, but I do spend money upgrading whenever it’s time. What are your thoughts about SAAS (software as a service)?