Windows 8 will have more SKUs (Stock Keeping Units) than Windows 7. Thanks to people at Windows 8 beta who revealed the list of SKUs from registry entries of Windows 8.
Windows 8 Enterprise Edition
Windows 8 Enterprise Eval edition
Windows 8 Home Basic Edition
Windows 8 Home Premium edition
Windows 8 ARM edition
Windows 8 Professional edition
Windows 8 Professional Plus edition
Windows 8 Starter edition
Windows 8 Ultimate edition
It's possible that those "Enterprise" additions will allow keeping the old Start Menu. This particular preview that was just released was, after all, called a "Consumer Preview". I think there's still hope for the traditional desktop UI in Windows 8.
I'll be interesting in if Ultimate has any real benefit this time, both in Vista and 7 it was a waste of money...
Also wonder what Professional "Plus" will be. Seems like an awkward additional release.
In general I think Windows XP got it most right with two consumers editions. One which was essentially designed for business users (without enterprise licenses) and geeks, and the other designed for your dad and girlfriend.
Yes, it might be a good time sell short since MSFT is currently trading at a 4-year high. There's nowhere to go but down now.
Wow, I hope this turns out to be wrong.
Windows 8 Home ($30 upgrade, $100 retail)
Windows 8 Professional/Enterprise ($50 upgrade, $150 retail)
Anything more just confuses customers.
Ideally they should have one and only one baseline OS. After installation, you can then add any/all of the additional features you want for some cost for each.
1. Install baseline OS 2. After install: [ ] Media Center +$20 [x] XP Mode +$15 [ ] Domain Join +$30 [x] Backup to Network +$20 [x] BitLocker +$20 ...etc
Businesses can then create one image that contains all the features they need. Of course with volume licensing they won't pay per feature, but the installer will be customized to already include the features for that license and will not require any additional payment for each.
The nice thing about such an approach is that you can add features at any time, so you don't end up with the situation where you found out later you now need a feature that isn't in the version you bought, and you'll need to do a full upgrade just to get it (and pay much more for feature you don't want).
I'm kinda curious what Windows 8 Starter would be like. No fancy window chrome? Limited number of apps open at once?
Maybe then that is the whole point of this discussion. Especially when you consider that in any particular market, you will only see a subset of the SKUs.
SKUs are the lesser evil, but if there's quantillions of them it's still satanic.
Something like "Professional Plus" is utterly ridiculous. Especially if they do again a stunt like in Vista, where the pricier version had not always all the features of the lesser versions.
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