Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Microsoft Announces Six Windows 7 SKUs

Word was that Microsoft would announce the list of SKUs for Windows 7 on Feb. 3rd, and that's what happened. Unfortunately for those of us hoping to see something like Windows XP, with two versions, we didn't get our wish.

Here's the list that Microsoft has confirmed:
  • Windows 7 Starter: up to 3 concurrent applications, ability to join a Home Group, improved taskbar and JumpLists.
  • Windows 7 Home Basic: unlimited applications, live thumbnail previews & enhanced visual experience, advanced networking support (ad-hoc wireless networks and Internet connection sharing), and Mobility Center.
  • Windows 7 Home Premium: Aero Glass & advanced windows navigation, improved media format support, enhancements to Windows Media Center and media streaming, including Play To, and multi-touch and improved handwriting recognition.
  • Windows 7 Professional: ability to join a managed network with Domain Join, data protection with advanced network backup and Encrypting File System, and print to the right printer at home or work with Location Aware Printing.
  • Windows 7 Enterprise: volume licensees only, covers everything in Ultimate.
  • Windows 7 Ultimate: bitLocker data protection on internal and external drives, DirectAccess for seamless connectivity to corporate networks based on Windows Server 2008 R2, BranchCache support when on networks based on Windows Server 2008 R2, and lock unauthorized software from running with AppLocker.
Despite the long list, Microsoft said in a press release that they would emphasize two versions: Home Premium and Professional. Based on how well Microsoft did with the Windows Vista version of Ultimate, I might actually stay away from that this time.

And no netbook-specific version of Windows 7 either. Of course, Microsoft from the start has trumpeted that Windows 7 will run very well on a netbook.

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