How much will Windows 8.1 cost? Microsoft releases pricing options for Windows 8.1

windows8.1

Microsoft has announced official pricing details for Windows 8.1 ahead of its release next month.

Current Windows 8 users will get Windows 8.1 as a free upgrade. For Windows 7 users or earlier that are looking to upgrade, Windows 8.1 will cost $120. Windows 8.1 Pro which will include additional features like Windows Media Center, BitLocker and Remote Desktop Connection will be priced at $200.

The Windows 8.1 Pro Pack on the other hand is meant to be an upgrade version for users that purchase Windows 8.1, but want to upgrade to the Pro version at a later time. The Windows 8.1 Pro Pack will be available for $99. Media Center can also be purchased separately for $10. If you currently have a Windows 8 device, you’ll receive the update for free.

A welcome change that Microsoft is going with this time around is that these versions of Windows are considered “full versions,” and not upgrade versions. The current Windows 8 on sale online and at retail is an upgrade version, which requires a previous version of Windows. Microsoft says the full versions should make it easier for people who are building a new PC, running Windows 8.1 in a Virtual Machine and for installing it on a different hard drive partition.

There is, however, some bad news for users that like to upgrade their OS and keep their files and settings intact rather than doing a clean install. Windows 8.1 will only feature full upgrades with everything intact from Windows 8. Windows 7 users will get to keep all their files, but have to reinstall desktop apps including Microsoft Office. Windows Vista and XP users are required to do a clean install.

Windows 8.1 will be released on October 18th.

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9 comments

  1. Godel

    “The current Windows 8 on sale online and at retail is an upgrade version, which requires a previous version of Windows.”

    In theory it does, but it will clean-install on a new computer using the old “install it twice” trick. Technically this is a violation of the license, but because Microsoft have made it so easy and since this ability has been in since Vista onwards, widely documented, yet still works, I think MS are being disingenuous.

    The only caveat is that I think the install would be limited to that computer, similar to an OEM edition. You couldn’t uninstall and move it to another computer without questions being asked.

    In Australia Windows 8 Pro Upgrades are still available for $68 AUD from Officeworks, according to staticice. Windows 8.1 is a free download upgrade from that point.

  2. smaragdus

    I bought a new laptop with Windows 8 pre-installed. I managed to disable the start screen, the charms and other nuisances using Classic Shell. So after almost coping with the most evil OS ever I won’t even think of upgrading it (in fact a real downgrade) to even more evil one- Windows 8.1 PRISM Edition.