Microsoft's outrageous Windows 7 upgrade rip-off
By Barry Collins
Posted on 31 Jul 2009 at 18:11
Microsoft is charging British buyers over twice as much to upgrade Windows 7 as American buyers.
The latest example of rip-off Britain arrives with Microsoft's Windows 7 Anytime Upgrade prices.
Anytime Upgrades allow users of Windows 7 Starter, Home Premium or Professional to upgrade to a higher version of the operating system simply by entering a code provided by Microsoft or its retail partners.
In Britain, upgrading from Windows 7 Home Premium to Professional will cost £120. In the US, the same upgrade costs only $90 (£54). It means British buyers are being charged more than twice as much for nothing more than a simple code.
Netbook buyers wanting to upgrade from Windows 7 Starter to Home Premium will be charged £70 in Britain, whereas US buyers are charged $80 (£48).
Microsoft - which announced the prices at 5:15pm on Friday afternoon - said it couldn't provide a spokesman to justify the rip-off Britain prices.
However, it issued the following statement:
"First, we know most customers buy a PC pre-installed with the right edition for them - that is the easiest and by far the most popular way to get a new operating system.
"That said, Windows 7 WAU pricing is comparable to - and in some cases significantly lower than - Windows Vista WAU pricing. And while Windows 7 pricing is comparable to previous versions, new features add value through richer scenarios and more possibilities, offering a simplified computing experience with more options to enjoy and use media on their terms, work anywhere and get more done."
Windows 7 Anytime Upgrade Pricing (US prices in brackets)
Starter to Home Premium - £70 (£48)
Starter to Professional - £120 (£69)
Starter to Ultimate - £140 (£99)
Home Premium to Professional £120 (£54)
Home Premium to Ultimate £125 (£84)
Professional to Ultimate £85 (£78)
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