The upcoming Windows 8 operating system has a lot of PC users feeling excited. In days gone by, Microsoft would offer new PC users a free upgrade during the transition period from one operating system to another. This ensured that they wouldn’t delay their purchase of a PC till a later date.

However, those days appear to be over.

When Windows 8 is released later this year, users who purchase new Windows 7 PCs won’t get the chance for a free upgrade. Instead, they’re going to have to shell out an extra $14.99 if they want to make the switch.

It’s easy to see this story as Microsoft being evil. However, that isn’t really the case. Users who opt for the $15 upgrade will have full access to Windows 8 Pro. In the past, Windows’ free upgrade would only give access to the most basic editions of the new operating system.

In that sense, new PC owners could actually save a ton of money by buying a PC with Windows 7 home basic installed, only to pay $14.99 for the upgrade to Windows 8 soon afterwards. This would give them access to a bunch of features that would not be available on the basic edition of Windows 7.

Whether you appreciate the look of Windows 8’s sleek Metro UI, or you simply want the latest and greatest operating system installed on your PC at all times, I think this $14.99 upgrade is good for Microsoft. It enhances the value of Windows 8 and, at the same time, gives new PC users access to a wide range of options – if they want it.

For the time being, we don’t see anything wrong with Windows 7. If Windows 8 can build off the success of its predecessor, then we expect to see good things for the company in the future.

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