Microsoft Is Insane: Offers Windows 8 Upgrades From XP Onward For Only $40

By: Zach Walton - July 2, 2012

I never upgrade to the newest version of Windows until I get a new computer. There’s a reason for that. I don’t feel like spending $120 on the newest version of Windows unless I’m going to get some hardware with it. Microsoft has never really made it cost effective to upgrade to the next version of Windows until now.

In a really bold, un-Microsoft-like move, the company announced today that all Windows installs from XP onwards will be eligible to upgrade to Windows 8 Pro for only $39.99 when the OS launches later this year. Even better, this deal is available in 131 markets. Also, you may recall how Microsoft was making Windows Media Center a paid add-on in Windows 8 – it’s totally free if you upgrade from a previous version.

So, how will this magically cheap upgrade work? Microsoft has prepared the Windows 8 Upgrade Assistant to help users prepare their computer for the onslaught that is Windows 8. First, it will make sure that your PC is capable of running Windows 8. You don’t want to spend $40 and then realize that you can’t even run the OS, right?

In even better news, the Upgrade Assistant will go through all of your drivers and applications telling you which ones are incompatible with your current set-up. It will also set up a page where you can choose to keep settings, applications and files from your current installation of Windows. Unfortunately, those upgrading from Windows XP will only be able to transfer personal files as system settings are apparently not cross compatible.

The Upgrade Assistant then goes to work downloading Windows 8 to your macine after purchase. After it finishes, you can jump the gun and start installing it. If you were smart, you wil instead choose to create a backup on DVD for upgrade purposes.

This crazy promotion that will undoubtedly drive people to buy Windows 8 will be available in over 100 countries and 37 languages. If you prefer to own a physical copy of Windows 8 Pro, it will be available at retail for $69.99. Both the digital and retail promotion end on January 31, 2013.

As far as I’m concerned, this is the craziest move Microsoft has ever made in regards to Windows. I don’t know if they’re scared about adoption so they’re lowering the price or they’re just that confident. I’m probably going to snag a copy for my laptop and keep running Windows 7 on my desktop. What about you guys?

About the Author

Zach WaltonZach Walton is a Writer for WebProNews. He specializes in gaming and technology. Follow him on Twitter, StumbleUpon, Pinterest, and Google+ +Zach Walton

View all posts by Zach Walton
  • David

    Not crazy. Realistic. At $40 upgrade it’s possibly still too expensive.

    Linux – Free
    Max OSX – $29
    IOS updates- Free
    Android – Free

    I think the days of the previous high OS fees for Windows are gone. Windows is not the dominant player they once were, particularly in the consumer space. Possibly that’s why the hardware business is looking more attractive today for MS. A lot of downward pressure on OS prices.

  • Ghostlogic

    Not that realistic, you have to remember this too

    Linux – Free – harder to use/install/for average consumer and many
    Mac OSX – $29 (Need to buy a apple computer that will cost at least 1k which apple gets,while you could be running a 300$ pc)
    IOS updates- Free (phone windows phones free too)
    Android – Free (phone- windows phones free too

    Only real comparison here is Mac OS and apple wants users to upgrade so their macbooks work better and they keep them/buy another mac book when time comes

    Microsoft atm just needs to offer the one service and not care about computers as they age as its not their problem

    This offer is to try and hook ppl as well as get rid of those holding onto old systems so they can stop supporting them with a statement about how only *% still use them. This is also likely influenced by them testing how it would work considering they are following apples strategy with the Surface.

  • Ghostlogic

    Oh and not all IOS updates are free after a certain time you need to shell out 5$ for old phones

    Only 10% of android phones have the 2nd newest version

    All windows phones have the newest version, although none will be able to run the next version

  • burney mc

    If the programmers at microsoft knew how much their programs frusrate non-geek people, who have to put up with untrustworthy and difficult applications, they would hang their heads in shame. The old IBM system 36 was much easier for people to use…I wrote programs for S/36 which were as easy to use as falling off a log… Microsoft is another word for retarded