Windows 8 pricing has been revealed, and it looks like early adopters are going to get a pretty good deal on the new OS. This lower-than-usual pricing might not last, though. Newegg has made Windows 8 available for pre-order and the prices are listed as temporary savings, putting full versions of the OS within the $69-140 range.
Windows 8 Pro (the equivalent of Windows 7 Ultimate) can be pre-ordered as an OEM version for $139 with the standard Windows 8 OS being available at just $99. This falls in line with the OEM prices of previous Windows operating systems, though Windows 8 Pro isn’t exactly the same as Windows 7’s professional SKU. It actually acts as a bit of a replacement for Ultimate, which makes this price a bargain compared to the almost $190 Newegg sells Windows 7 Ultimate (OEM) at presently.
Here’s a look at the current pre-orders being taken over at NewEgg.
- Microsoft Windows 8 64-bit (Full Version) – OEM ($99.99)
- Microsoft Windows 8 Professional 64-bit (Full Version) – OEM ($139.99)
- Microsoft Windows 8 Professional 32-bit (Full Version) – OEM ($139.99)
- Microsoft Windows 8 Professional Upgrade ($69.99)
- Microsoft Windows 8 32-bit (Full Version) – OEM ($99.99)
- Microsoft Windows 8 Pro Pack – Product Key Card (no media) ($69.99)
Where the temporary deals come in involve upgrades. If you’re currently using Windows 7 and just want to upgrade, you can do so at a discount. For about $70, you can upgrade to Windows 8 Pro either with media or through an ISO download coupled with the Pro Pack. Each option is currently priced the same, though this is expected to change.
The Windows 8 Pro Pack (key card only) is listed at $69.99 with a regular retail price of $99.99. Windows 8 Professional Upgrade (with media) is also available at $69.99 with a regular retail price of $199.99. That’s a $130 discount out of the gate. Quite a bargain.
If you purchase(d) a Windows 7 PC between June 2, 2012, and January 31, 2013, you can go through Microsoft and upgrade the OS to Windows 8 for just $14.99.
What is an OEM Version, Anyway?
OEM stands for Original Equipment Manufacturer, which is a designation given to PC builders that build PCs out of components sourced from various vendors. Dell, HP, and Lenovo are popular corporate Windows OEMs. Your local PC shop or even an independent consultant that builds a PC for a client can also be called an OEM.
The idea is that Microsoft offers a discounted version of Windows for folks that build PCs for the purpose of selling them. This helps keep the cost of manufacturing PCs down, and is one of the big reasons Windows has so much market share today.
Newegg sells OEM copies of Windows because it caters to the OEM crowd. Many of the customers that use Newegg are building their own PCs from parts purchased on the site, and Newegg provides OEM software as a service to these builders. Thankfully, you can take advantage of the private use license and grab an OEM copy for your own PC project.
Here’s the rub. OEM copies of Windows do not have the full retail support of a regular copy. You are expected to provide your own tech support. You are an OEM in this case, after all. This is why Dell and HP provide tech support for Windows issues on their machines.
So, will you be picking up a copy of Windows 8? If so, what version?