The Schwartz Report

Blog archive

Last Chance To Get Windows 8 Pro on the Cheap

At the risk of sounding like a car salesman, time is running out. Next Thursday is the last day to take advantage of Microsoft's $39.99 upgrade to Windows 8 Pro -- $14.99 if you purchased a Windows 7 machine after June 2 of last year. I'm not a pitchman for Microsoft, and at Redmond magazine we clearly understand many enterprises coming off Windows 7 upgrades are in no rush to move to Windows 8. Nevertheless, there are many good reasons why IT pros should use Windows 8.  

Anyone who has followed the pricing history of Windows can attest the company has never (at least in recent memory) offered its flagship PC operating system at such a cut rate price. Who knows if Microsoft will offer Windows at that price again? It's possible they will, especially if Windows 8 sales don't meet Microsoft's and Wall Street's hopes. But it could also prove to be your last chance to get Windows 8 Pro so cheap (upgrade licenses jump to $119 on Feb. 1).

When Microsoft released Windows 7, the company initially offered a package to consumers that permitted upgrades to 3 PCs for $149.99, an offer it brought back briefly in the early days but never did so after that point. I took advantage of the offer even though I didn't actually upgrade all of my family PCs right away. But it turned out to be worthwhile a couple of years later.

Even if you don't have touch-enabled PCs -- and most people probably don't -- you should become familiar with Windows 8 and its new Windows Store (aka Metro) interface. It works fine with a mouse and keyboard. And while the store lacks the number of apps available in the iTunes App Store or Google Play, the numbers are increasing. Using apps on a PC is a compelling experience and portends how people will ultimately use their PCs with or without touch.

Perhaps you're worried your existing apps won't work if you install Windows 8. Certainly make sure you run the Windows 8 Migration Assistant and make sure your hardware and software is compatible. Presuming your system passes muster, I can say running existing apps through classic Windows 8 has been a charm -- pun intended. So if you want to take advantage of some of the features Windows 8 offers but don't feel like shelling out big bucks for a new touch-enabled machine, Microsoft's soon-to-expire offer is worth considering -- even if you think you might want to perform the upgrade later.



Posted by Jeffrey Schwartz on 01/25/2013 at 1:14 PM

comments powered by Disqus

Reader Comments:

Mon, Jan 28, 2013 Craig

Windows 8 isn't worth the discount price and raising it makes it even less attractive. I will continue to use Windows 7 and Linux.

Sat, Jan 26, 2013 David US of A

@Ricky Because frankly there shouldn't even BE a Home edition. Either you have a network ready OS or you don't. If you have a network ready OS then someone at the house should be able to conveniently administer it. All of M$ Home editions fail at the above. As for Windows 8 itself, it falls under the rule of "Every Other". As in every other M$ OS stinks on ice. Wind 98SE = good Wind Millennium = horrible Wind XP = good Wind Vista = horrible Wind 7 = good Wind 8 = horrible

Sat, Jan 26, 2013 Bernie A. Casera, RN Philippines

I availed the $69.99 worth windows 8 pro [W8P] through the official link of microsoft. I am obviously enjoying the smooth flow of the operating system. How many laptop/PC units that the product key can still be used?

Sat, Jan 26, 2013 Bill Mitchell

Just bought a new laptop with Windows 8 on it. Lasted about a day before I got rid of that junk and put Windows7 on it. Windows 8 does nothing (I need) better than Windows 7 and MANY things worse. You know when you are running an aftermarket Start Button app just to make a brand new OS workable there is a serious problem. MS obsession with getting rid of highly functional menus and replacing them with highly confusing big pretty icons is a mystery. Do they think their customers are 5 years old? It all began with the "ribbons" in Office and went downhill from there. MS stop trying to be Apple. You suck at it.

Sat, Jan 26, 2013 Rolle

For one thing, you don't 'own' Windows 8, you buy a license for a PC and that license right lives and dies with that specific PC. With the hardware upgrade timecycle being as short as it is today, spending $$ now on an OS for an old(er) PC makes dubious sense. You'll likely dump it for a fast new one soon enough, and get Win8 by fefsult. Any retail PC purchased comes w/license and is cheap in the bundle price, argueably no more costly than the 'upgrade deal'. As for the supposed 'benefits' to Win8, after much use, I'm at a complete loss as to what they are. To my eyes, it's a dumbed down Win7 with major useability deficiencies included, at extra cost....I'll pass.

Sat, Jan 26, 2013 Marky iDAHO

The problem with Windows 8 is that there were too many things that were incompatible. I hope for the day when there is an android operating system for a personal computer.

Sat, Jan 26, 2013 Walter Johnson Vancouver, WA

We as a family are debating upgrading to Windows 8, and yes if we do so, it is wise to do it by January 31, 2013. However, if we decide against the upgrade that decision is permanent too. None of us for example see much advantage to using gestures and touch screen monitors.

Sat, Jan 26, 2013

Hahahaha, no. I'll stick to 7 for things that I absolutely have to have windows for, and use linux for everything else.

Sat, Jan 26, 2013 Kent Hughes United States

When I tried to upgrade a laptop I bought last summer, I was informed by the assistant that I couldn't download the upgrade because I didn't live in the US. I was attempting this from California. When I called for support, I was asked by the crack Microsoft technical assistant if I was sure that I was in the US. I should upgrade with these idiots? I wonder why Windows 8 is flopping?

Fri, Jan 25, 2013 Ricky Stiles

Hi, Please correct me if I am wrong but I believe that you can only use this program to upgrade a max of 5 PC's and you must purchase it through the Microsoft web site. So basically, it is only for residential users (most smb's have more than 5 pc's) which begs the question as to why they provide the PRO edition? I welcome your thoughts... Ricky

Add Your Comment Now:

Your Name:(optional)
Your Email:(optional)
Your Location:(optional)
Please type the letters/numbers you see above

Redmond Tech Watch

Sign up for our newsletter.

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.