Windows 8 will have 9 SKUs

first_imgIf you choose to install a Linux distribution you typically have the choice of 32-bit or 64-bit versions. Mac OS X is pretty simple too: server or consumer. But if you use Windows 7, you have 6 different versions available: Starter Edition, Home Basic, Home Premium, Professional, Ultimate, and Enterprise. It’s quite ridiculous, and yet Microsoft has decided to increase the version count for Windows 8 to 9 SKUs. The discovery was made in the registry files of the Windows 8 Consumer Preview, which lists the following versions:Windows 8 ARM editionWindows 8 Starter EditionWindows 8 Home BasicWindows 8 Home PremiumWindows 8 ProfessionalWindows 8 Professional PlusWindows 8 UltimateWindows 8 Enterprise EvalWindows 8 EnterpriseFor the majority of people (consumers) the Enterprise and Starter Edition can be discounted. But that still leaves 6 SKUs to choose from, one of which is the expected new ARM edition.What I don’t understand is why Microsoft hasn’t learned from Windows 7. If you look at the majority of consumer hardware it ships with just one version: Windows 7 Home Premium as it offers everything the typical user needs. I think you could easily trim that list down to just 5 SKUs: Starter EditionHome EditionProfessional EditionEnterprise EditionARM EditionConsumer hardware ships with Starter or Home depending on the market, with Home offering all the features seen in Windows 7’s Home Premium edition. Professional brings together everything in Professional and Ultimate for business users, and Enterprise is the top-end for corporate users. By doing that the naming fits better too, with consumer and business customers having a very clear choice.Another thing Microsoft could do: drop versions completely and just ship a fully-featured Windows 8 for ARM or x86 at a consumer-friendly price. That’s never going to happen though, is it?Read more at Windows 8 Beta, via Engadgetlast_img read more