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Brandon LeBlanc of the Windows 7 Team Blog posts a clarifying article on the Windows 7 SKUs

February 5, 2009

Brandon LeBlanc has written a post on the Windows 7 Team Blog where he goes into the different SKUs of Windows 7.

Bloggers and pundits have been all over Microsoft for not making things easier for the consumers by having too many SKUs. I totally disagree and think that things are actually much easier this time around. Yes, there are 6 different SKUs mentioned;

  • Windows 7 Home Premium
  • Windows 7 Professional
  • Windows 7 Starter (OEM only)
  • Windows 7 Home Basic (OEM only)
  • Windows 7 Enterprise (Volume License Agreements Only)
  • Windows 7 Ultimate

But as Brandon clearly shows Home Premium and Professional are the two different SKUs most consumers will have to choose from. The others ones are aimed at niche markets, and will not even be available for most people.

He also states that;

We also make it easy for customers to change down the road. So let’s say I purchase Windows 7 Home Premium and want to upgrade to Windows 7 Professional. With Windows Anytime Upgrade I can, as it makes upgrading to another version of Windows 7 much easier now that we have a single image for every SKU. Users will be able to unlock upgraded editions of Windows 7 without original media or additional software as everything they need in order to upgrade will be on their PC already.

Because each SKU is a superset of the previous SKU for Windows 7 that means each higher edition SKU will also include every feature the lower edition SKUs has. Windows 7 Professional will have every feature that Windows 7 Home Premium has plus other business-oriented features such as the ability to join a domain.

I recommend going to the Windows 7 Team Blog and read the post in its entirety. Do I believe that the MS bashers out there will calm down – no, but anyway…


A closer look at the Windows 7 SKUs – Windows 7 Team Blog – The Windows Blog

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Kristan Kenney permalink
    February 5, 2009 7:12 am

    The biggest thing is that it is a step in the right direction. I’m also glad to see that there have been improvements with Windows Anytime Upgrade; I was speaking with a friend of mine about it and he reported that WAU only takes ~5 minutes now and doesn’t require re-installing everything.

  2. K. Whitehouse permalink
    March 22, 2009 10:44 am

    “Step in the right direction”? Listening to the “OEM Partners” is what got Vista into the huge marketing black-hole we’re in now. The two OEM SKUs need to disappear completely. That’s ‘need,’ not ‘I would like to see.’

    Six SKUs is idiocy, and isn’t an improvement in any way over Vista’s SKUs. They’ve actually made the situation EVEN WORSE by giving idiots like Dell, Sony, HP, and Lenovo the ability to offer a half-assed, crippled version of the OS (Starter).

    You can yell “they’ll never put that on a machine anyway” as much as you want, but the truth is that the exact same thing was said about Home Basic. This is nothing but another class-action lawsuit.

    Perhaps MS should stop trying to address problems that don’t, and have never, exist(ed), and stick to offering 3 SKUs: Home, Pro, and Enterprise.

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