With Windows 8 officially launching in under two weeks, Microsoft and its retail partners have finally begun taking pre-orders for Windows 8. As with prior Windows pre-order promotions, several retailers are participating, including a number of brick & mortar retailers along with e-tailers such as Newegg, Amazon, and even Microsoft’s own online store.

Microsoft will essentially be handling the launch of Windows 8 in two phases: pre-order and launch. The pre-order phase is primarily geared towards buyers looking for boxed copies of Windows and with delivery on the 26th; unsurprisingly these boxed copies are priced notably higher than Microsoft’s download options. As for buyers looking to take advantage of Microsoft’s previously announced $39.99 download offer, that promotion will not begin until the launch on the 26th when Windows 8 actually ships. On that note, as previously announced both the boxed and download copies will be offered with promotional pricing, with Microsoft and its partners selling the upgrades at a significant discount until January 31, 2013.

Windows 8 SKUs
  Windows 8 Upgrade Windows 7/Vista/XP Upgrade Full Version Price
Windows 8 Pro Pack X - - $69
Windows 8 Pro Upgrade (Boxed) - X - $69
Windows 8 Pro Upgrade (Download) - X - $39
Windows 8 (Core) OEM - - X $99
Windows 8 Professional OEM - - X $139

For buyers looking for physical copies, retailers are taking pre-orders for both upgrade and full editions of Windows 8. For Windows X/Vista/7 users Microsoft is offering a single upgrade package, the Windows 8 Professional Upgrade, which has a list price of $99 but is being offered at $69 for the life of the promotion. Meanwhile the download version that will be made available on the 26th will have a $39 promotional price, putting a $30 premium on boxed copies.

As for Windows 8 (core) users – primarily those who buy computers with Windows 8 pre-installed – Microsoft is offering the Windows 8 Pro Pack upgrade for upgrading a Windows 8 (core) installation to Windows 8 Pro. Like the Win7 upgrade, this too is being offered at a promotional price of $69 with a list price of $99.

Finally, full versions of both Windows 8 (core) and Windows 8 are also being offered for pre-order, but only in OEM form at this time. There isn’t a publicly announced discount on these, so the list price of $99 for Windows 8 (core) and $139 for Windows 8 Professional should be the final price, which also closely matches the price for OEM copies of Windows 7. We haven’t seen retail full versions of Windows 8 appear for sale yet, and while there are rumors going around that Windows 8 will be OEM-only, it has not been confirmed by Microsoft.

Source: Microsoft

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  • Sebec - Monday, October 15, 2012 - link

    I think you want to proof read this article -- missing words and typos abound.
  • Freakie - Monday, October 15, 2012 - link

    Maybe I'm just being dumb at the moment, but whats the point of having the Windows 8 Pro Pack and Windows 8 Pro Upgrade Boxed, and then Windows 8 Pro Upgrade Download? Shouldn't the Windows 8 Pro Upgrade Download work for upgrading an existing Windows 8 Core install to Windows 8 Pro? And the Pro Pack is a key-card to download the installation files which makes it no different than the Pro Upgrade and you pay the same price for a download key as you do for Boxed media.

    Is there any real difference between Win8 Pro Upgrade Download and Win8 Pro Pack? I can't see the Windows 8 Pro Upgrade not working for an existing installation of Windows 8. Or is Microsoft feeling a bit barren with only having two versions (Core and Pro) and so instead of confusing people with versions, they're confusing them with upgrade options? xP Either way, I'm gettin' my download version on the 26th :)
  • Old_Fogie_Late_Bloomer - Monday, October 15, 2012 - link

    You're not being dumb; you're just not grasping Microsoft's intent. The upgrade from previous versions of Windows is cheap to suck people in. Once you're already using Windows 8, Microsoft has no incentive to discount the upgrade to Windows 8 Pro.
  • Freakie - Monday, October 15, 2012 - link

    I think you're being a little too pessimistic xP Like I said, I HIGHLY doubt that the Win8 Pro Upgrade wont let you upgrade an existing Win8 Core install. Unless Microsoft has completely changed the way they handle upgrade installs all you need is for Windows to have been on the hard drive before. Heck, registry work around exists for even if it's a fresh drive. I just think it's a silly grab at some extra money from customers, to be honest. But who knows, maybe there will be features/limitations that are different between the two.
  • Old_Fogie_Late_Bloomer - Monday, October 15, 2012 - link

    I think I would describe my position as "cynical", rather than "pessimistic". :-P Either way, it's definitely a money grab.
  • rs2 - Monday, October 15, 2012 - link

    Yes, it's probably a money grab. But as money grabs go, it's at least an order of magnitude better than Apple's "we're changing all of our connectors to a proprietary design that won't work with any of your existing accessories unless you buy a $29 adaptor from us" money grab.
  • DanNeely - Monday, October 15, 2012 - link

    I suspect the pro-pack is a download only option; and is priced at the same as the non-discounted price of the downloadable pro-upgrade.

    ex starting feb 1 prices will be:

    Windows 8 Pro Pack $69
    Windows 8 Pro Upgrade (Boxed) $99
    Windows 8 Pro Upgrade (Download) $69
    Windows 8 (Core) OEM $99
    Windows 8 Professional OEM $139

    If there was a core upgrade option the pricing weirdness wouldn't occur; but it was apparently scrapped to cut down on the confusion from having a bunch of upgrade versions around.

    To avoid the confusion their pricing is producing they probably should've just discounted the pro pack too. Looking at what it adds, sales will probably be low enough that it wouldn't really make a difference to their bottom line.
  • Metaluna - Monday, October 15, 2012 - link

    So it's confirmed that the $39 upgrade price is a limited-time promotion then? That price has been reported for months now, but I've never been able to determine if it was the normal list price or a special offer.
  • Ryan Smith - Monday, October 15, 2012 - link

    Correct. It's until January 31st, unless Microsoft decides to extend it.
  • imaheadcase - Monday, October 15, 2012 - link

    Depending on sales, so yah they will extend it because sales will be flat.

    Its cheap for a reason, you are paying for Win 7 themes.

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