Microsoft's Windows 8 Pro software will be priced at $199 after a promotional price of $69.99 expires on January 31st 2013, according to one source familiar with Microsoft's plans. The software maker will also offer a Windows 8 to Windows 8 Pro upgrade option at retail stores for $69.99 until January 31st when the price reverts to $99.99.
Microsoft previously announced its $39.99 Windows 8 Pro upgrade pricing for existing Windows XP, Windows Vista, or Windows 7 users — a price available exclusively online for those wishing to download the software without a DVD option. Retailers will stock a $69.99 Windows 8 Pro option in stores, one that may be offered as a traditional full version of Windows for those without a previous copy. Both the Windows 8 to Windows 8 Pro and Windows 8 Pro copies will be made available from retailers on October 26th.
Huh? I want to give Microsoft credit for only offering Windows 8 in two editions, instead of five or seven, but this promotional pricing nonsense manages to be almost as confusing.
Meanwhile, there continues to be one and only one version of OS X, available at one price ($20!) through a single distribution channel. Granted, Microsoft doesn't have the luxury of being able to self-distribute an OS for only their own hardware through an online channel they completely control. But if they feel like they can afford to sell a standalone Windows 8 Pro license for $70, then they ought to just sell it for $70.