Brandon LeBlanc has written a post on the Windows 7 Team Blog where he goes into the different SKUs of Windows 7.
Bloggers and pundits have been all over Microsoft for not making things easier for the consumers by having too many SKUs. I totally disagree and think that things are actually much easier this time around. Yes, there are 6 different SKUs mentioned;
- Windows 7 Home Premium
- Windows 7 Professional
- Windows 7 Starter (OEM only)
- Windows 7 Home Basic (OEM only)
- Windows 7 Enterprise (Volume License Agreements Only)
- Windows 7 Ultimate
But as Brandon clearly shows Home Premium and Professional are the two different SKUs most consumers will have to choose from. The others ones are aimed at niche markets, and will not even be available for most people.
He also states that;
We also make it easy for customers to change down the road. So let’s say I purchase Windows 7 Home Premium and want to upgrade to Windows 7 Professional. With Windows Anytime Upgrade I can, as it makes upgrading to another version of Windows 7 much easier now that we have a single image for every SKU. Users will be able to unlock upgraded editions of Windows 7 without original media or additional software as everything they need in order to upgrade will be on their PC already.
Because each SKU is a superset of the previous SKU for Windows 7 that means each higher edition SKU will also include every feature the lower edition SKUs has. Windows 7 Professional will have every feature that Windows 7 Home Premium has plus other business-oriented features such as the ability to join a domain.
I recommend going to the Windows 7 Team Blog and read the post in its entirety. Do I believe that the MS bashers out there will calm down – no, but anyway…