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Microsoft drops Vista price

Windows Vista UltimateMicrosoft is cutting prices for various versions of Windows Vista. But good luck figuring out exactly what that means for you. In the US, CNet reports that customers purchasing a full boxed version of Vista Ultimate will pay the same high $399 price as always. But the price of an upgrade disc has dropped from $299 to $219. The base price of Home Premium stays the same at $240, but the upgrade price has dropped from $159 to $129. And of course, you can find everything for cheaper if you shop around.

Confused yet? Well, one thing is certainly clear. Microsoft is trying to push more copies of Windows Vista. And while the company claims that adoption rates have been high so far, the truth of the matter is that most new Vista users got their copies when they bought a new computer preloaded with the operating system. The high price may be one discouraging feature, but wide reports of software incompatibilities and other bugs have also scared away a lot of consumers.

And don't forget the fact that Windows XP still offers most of the features many computer users are looking for, so why upgrade? Look, we're not trying to bash Microsoft here. In fact, quite the opposite. The company put out an operating system more than 5 years ago that was solid enough that it's still in use today. Maybe when Microsoft stops offering security and feature updates for Windows XP people will switch to Windows Vista en masse. But charging hundreds of dollars for software that may not run on existing computers and doesn't offer many advantages over your existing software doesn't make much sense to us, price cut or no price cut.

Update: Some sources are reporting that the full versions of Vista are getting a price cut, not just the upgrade versions. The BBC reports that the price of Windows Vista Ultimate, for example drops from $399 to $319.

Tags: commercial, osupdates, price-cut, vista, windows-vista