Windows 8 Pre-Orders Start; $39.99 Download Option on October 26thby Ryan Smith on October 15, 2012 12:10 PM EST
With Windows 8 officially launching in under two weeks, Microsoft and its retail partners have finally begun taking pre-orders for Windows 8. As with prior Windows pre-order promotions, several retailers are participating, including a number of brick & mortar retailers along with e-tailers such as Newegg, Amazon, and even Microsoft’s own online store.
Microsoft will essentially be handling the launch of Windows 8 in two phases: pre-order and launch. The pre-order phase is primarily geared towards buyers looking for boxed copies of Windows and with delivery on the 26th; unsurprisingly these boxed copies are priced notably higher than Microsoft’s download options. As for buyers looking to take advantage of Microsoft’s previously announced $39.99 download offer, that promotion will not begin until the launch on the 26th when Windows 8 actually ships. On that note, as previously announced both the boxed and download copies will be offered with promotional pricing, with Microsoft and its partners selling the upgrades at a significant discount until January 31, 2013.
|Windows 8 SKUs|
|Windows 8 Upgrade||Windows 7/Vista/XP Upgrade||Full Version||Price|
|Windows 8 Pro Pack||X||-||-||$69|
|Windows 8 Pro Upgrade (Boxed)||-||X||-||$69|
|Windows 8 Pro Upgrade (Download)||-||X||-||$39|
|Windows 8 (Core) OEM||-||-||X||$99|
|Windows 8 Professional OEM||-||-||X||$139|
For buyers looking for physical copies, retailers are taking pre-orders for both upgrade and full editions of Windows 8. For Windows X/Vista/7 users Microsoft is offering a single upgrade package, the Windows 8 Professional Upgrade, which has a list price of $99 but is being offered at $69 for the life of the promotion. Meanwhile the download version that will be made available on the 26th will have a $39 promotional price, putting a $30 premium on boxed copies.
As for Windows 8 (core) users – primarily those who buy computers with Windows 8 pre-installed – Microsoft is offering the Windows 8 Pro Pack upgrade for upgrading a Windows 8 (core) installation to Windows 8 Pro. Like the Win7 upgrade, this too is being offered at a promotional price of $69 with a list price of $99.
Finally, full versions of both Windows 8 (core) and Windows 8 are also being offered for pre-order, but only in OEM form at this time. There isn’t a publicly announced discount on these, so the list price of $99 for Windows 8 (core) and $139 for Windows 8 Professional should be the final price, which also closely matches the price for OEM copies of Windows 7. We haven’t seen retail full versions of Windows 8 appear for sale yet, and while there are rumors going around that Windows 8 will be OEM-only, it has not been confirmed by Microsoft.