Microsoft Readies Major Launch Wave - InformationWeek

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Software // Operating Systems

Microsoft Readies Major Launch Wave

Windows 7's October release will mark the first of a number of new offerings from Redmond.

A Microsoft official said Monday that the software maker is preparing for "one of the biggest launch waves" in its history with a flurry of new product releases that will kick off with the Oct. 22nd release of Windows 7 and the shipping of Windows Server 2008 R2.

Windows 7 screen shot
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In the months following the release of its new client and server operating systems, Microsoft will introduce Office 2010, and new versions of Windows Mobile, SharePoint Server and Exchange Server, said Allison Watson, corporate VP for Microsoft's Worldwide Partner Group, in a statement.

"This will be one of the biggest launch waves in the history of Microsoft," said Watson.

"I should also point out that with all these products and product families, each can be delivered on-premises, hosted by partners, or in the cloud, which creates further opportunities for customers and partners to build value with technology," said Watson.

Among Microsoft's upcoming product launches, Windows 7 is clearly the most widely anticipated.

The full version of Windows 7 Home Premium is priced at $199, with an upgrade from Vista or XP costing $119. The full version of Windows 7 Professional is $299, with upgrades going for $199. Windows 7 Ultimate is priced at $319, with the upgrade version at $219.

In what's perhaps a nod to the recession and increased competition in the software market, the prices are about 10% less than what Microsoft charged for the corresponding versions of Windows Vista when that product shipped in January of 2007.

Additionally, customers in the U.S., Canada, and Japan who pre-order Windows 7 from certain online and brick-and-mortar stores—including Amazon and Best Buy--between June 25th and July 11th will receive discounts of more than 50%, Microsoft said. The same program is available in the UK, France, and Germany between July 15th and Aug. 14th.

InformationWeek has published an indepth report on Windows 7. Download the report here (registration required).

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