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Older Atom Netbooks Might Not Have Windows 7

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 21 comments

No new OS for the old CPU?

As much as we’re all highly anticipating the introduction of Windows 7, the shiny new OS might not be paired with certain models of netbooks that are running the currently most popular Intel Atom chip--the N270 and N280.

One issue is price. A Windows XP license for netbooks currently costs OEMs around $25 to $30, (of which Microsoft makes a profit of $15). For Windows 7, however, Microsoft is asking $45 to $55, which will drive prices up in an already very price-sensitive segment, according to Digitimes. Vendors are supposedly in talks with Microsoft to push the price down.

With the Atom N270 and N280 being pushed to the ‘budget netbook’ segment with the upcoming release of Pine Trail-based Atom chips (which integrate graphics to increase performance), OEMs figure that Windows XP will be adequate for most netbook purposes.

It’s now expected that OEMs will be pairing Windows 7 with Atom N450-based netbooks. But whatever the case, Windows 7 will slowly replace Windows XP as the new Atom chips take over the netbook build list.

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  • 3 Hide
    Uncle Meat , June 12, 2009 10:57 PM
    Quote:
    A Windows XP license for netbooks currently costs OEMs around $25 to $30, (of which Microsoft makes a profit of $15).


    And the other $10-$15 goes to who, exactly? There's no cost involved in selling a license.
  • 0 Hide
    The Schnoz , June 12, 2009 11:47 PM
    I could have sworn the cost for an XP license was only $15 per netbook, period.
    http://www.electronista.com/articles/09/04/19/ms.asks.15.for.xp.netbooks/
    and
    http://www.netbookchoice.com/2009/05/23/microsoft-prepping-maximum-specs-for-windows-7-netbooks/
    and even
    http://www.tomshardware.com/news/Windows-7-starter-Netbooks-15,7573.html

  • -1 Hide
    apache_lives , June 12, 2009 11:49 PM
    Its a newer, better product! Ofcourse its going to be more expensive atleast to begin with
  • Display all 21 comments.
  • 0 Hide
    salem80 , June 13, 2009 12:52 AM
    Uncle MeatAnd the other $10-$15 goes to who, exactly? There's no cost involved in selling a license.

    you're right..
  • 3 Hide
    witcherx , June 13, 2009 1:37 AM
    i never liked the atom hype.........
  • 4 Hide
    ta152h , June 13, 2009 1:43 AM
    Actually, there is a cost for selling a license; it's called support. All those folks at Microsoft that talk to you for free for a limited time have to be paid, and they wouldn't need to be paid unless people had licenses. More licenses, more support costs. Of course, Microsoft also has to figure in their development costs, not only in creating the software, but also supporting it with fixes (again, back to the "S" word). Then, they have to deal with legal fees, and fines from the EU, because they are so poor they always need to fine Microsoft so they survive. No licenses, no EU legal fees and fines.

    Selling licenses do have costs. It's not all profit.
  • 2 Hide
    Uncle Meat , June 13, 2009 2:18 AM
    Quote:
    Actually, there is a cost for selling a license; it's called support. All those folks at Microsoft that talk to you for free for a limited time have to be paid, and they wouldn't need to be paid unless people had licenses. More licenses, more support costs.


    Microsoft doesn't provide free support for OEM software.

    Quote:
    Of course, Microsoft also has to figure in their development costs, not only in creating the software, but also supporting it with fixes


    I'm pretty sure Microsoft has recouped their development costs for XP by now, and fixes don't cost more because you sell more copies.
  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , June 13, 2009 4:13 AM
    I definitely hope I'll see some nice benches of the Atom processor on Toms!
    Please,don't compare it with a corei7 and don't try to play Crysis on it for God's sake!
    Pentium D or M and Celeron processors, as the slowest Core2duo processors on the market may already overwhelm the chip!
    A great test would be to test the upcoming Atom in gaming benchmarks against such processors running an Intel GMA 945 or something... A chipset often found in laptops.

    I know Toms only benchmarks ATI and NVidia, but the majority of laptops have an Intel integrated chipset. So of course I would love to see how the newer processor +IGP does in gaming benchmarks (of games like 3+ years old), and in HD video playback even on larger external monitors...

    If the chip is overclockable or not, and at what speeds

    Power consumption at normal and overclock is interesting

    Perhaps compare the IGP to whatever comes closest in graphics processing power of ATI and AMD (eg: Radeon 9200 pro? TNT card? ...).

    Although the chip will stun no one in graphics or CPU processing power, elaboration on it's performance and power draw would be greatly appreciated!
  • -2 Hide
    ossie , June 13, 2009 7:07 AM
    Uncle MeatAnd the other $10-$15 goes to who, exactly? There's no cost involved in selling a license.

    To the marketing droid$, and propaganda $hill$, like yummy boy. This constant bombardment with ads, new$, and review$ costs big $$$ - the lu$er finally pays...

    Netbooks (atom) won't have vi$hta sp2+ (aka $even), because it's not capable to run on them - despite all the hype - even xpire struggles. The "new" netbook - shaped to "updated" m$ min specs, as the traditional one was deliberately killed - is a castrated notebook, with a high price tag: win(tel)- win situation for m$ and oems. Consumers just pay more for less.
    ta152hActually, there is a cost for selling a license; it's called support. All those folks at Microsoft that talk to you for free for a limited time have to be paid, and they wouldn't need to be paid unless people had licenses. More licenses, more support costs. Of course, Microsoft also has to figure in their development costs, not only in creating the software, but also supporting it with fixes (again, back to the "S" word). Then, they have to deal with legal fees, and fines from the EU, because they are so poor they always need to fine Microsoft so they survive. No licenses, no EU legal fees and fines. Selling licenses do have costs. It's not all profit.

    Ever bothered to read a (OEM) license agreement? It basically says you're screwed.
    Keep to your intel rants, the win part isn't your strength at all - the intel one, not much better, either.
  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , June 13, 2009 8:06 AM
    Actually, there is a cost for selling a license; how do you think Microsoft pays its outsourced workers to confirm your windows activation over the phone?

    As long as manufacturers don't give up on GNU/Linux then I'm happy. I can hardly wait to try the next version of Moblin on my Aspire One.

  • 0 Hide
    eddieroolz , June 13, 2009 9:36 AM
    Uncle MeatMicrosoft doesn't provide free support for OEM software.I'm pretty sure Microsoft has recouped their development costs for XP by now, and fixes don't cost more because you sell more copies.


    Actually, way before when I was running Pentium 4 and XP, I contacted Microsoft for help with XP, even though it was a Compaq machine. Needless to say, I did get help.
  • 1 Hide
    ta152h , June 13, 2009 1:17 PM
    Ossie and Uncle,

    Did you ever think about who supports your OEM when they get calls about problems they can't fix? Duh. At the end of the day, Microsoft has to support their OS, whether directly or not. By the way, who do you think has to work with the OEM? Microsoft has very high support costs.

    Oh, and Microsoft is STILL puts development money into XP. There's this thing called "Service Packs" they create. They also constantly do testing, especially with new software created for the operating system. It's not free.

    The bottom line is, anyone that thinks software is free even if it's only a license is someone that's never worked in the industry, and probably just pirates software and wants to rationalize their parasitic behavior. Of course, I'm not defending Microsoft's prices, I do think they are overly expensive. I'm just pointing out there are costs to licenses.
  • 0 Hide
    igot1forya , June 13, 2009 6:00 PM
    ta152hOssie and Uncle,Did you ever think about who supports your OEM when they get calls about problems they can't fix? Duh. At the end of the day, Microsoft has to support their OS, whether directly or not. By the way, who do you think has to work with the OEM? Microsoft has very high support costs. Oh, and Microsoft is STILL puts development money into XP. There's this thing called "Service Packs" they create. They also constantly do testing, especially with new software created for the operating system. It's not free.The bottom line is, anyone that thinks software is free even if it's only a license is someone that's never worked in the industry, and probably just pirates software and wants to rationalize their parasitic behavior. Of course, I'm not defending Microsoft's prices, I do think they are overly expensive. I'm just pointing out there are costs to licenses.


    Explain to me how that model works for Linux or open source? So if I buy Microsoft's software it immediately means I cost them $10? How about we put it this way, they have a revolving expense for support, weather I (or anyone) buys the software or not. You're logic is not flawed either, the problem is how they equate that mysterious $10...
  • 0 Hide
    Uncle Meat , June 13, 2009 6:12 PM
    Quote:
    Oh, and Microsoft is STILL puts development money into XP. There's this thing called "Service Packs" they create. They also constantly do testing, especially with new software created for the operating system. It's not free.


    Service packs for XP?! Not going to happen. And even if it did, they would happen even if Microsoft sold no XP licenses this year.

    Quote:
    The bottom line is, anyone that thinks software is free even if it's only a license is someone that's never worked in the industry, and probably just pirates software and wants to rationalize their parasitic behavior. Of course, I'm not defending Microsoft's prices, I do think they are overly expensive. I'm just pointing out there are costs to licenses.


    You're missing the point. Nobody said it is free, just that if Microsoft sells no XP licenses this year or sells a million of them, their costs do not change. All the money from sales of XP licenses at this point is profit.
  • 0 Hide
    JimmiG , June 13, 2009 7:59 PM
    Remind my again why I need to upgrade from TinyXP to Win7 on my Netbook?
  • 2 Hide
    ta152h , June 14, 2009 6:04 AM
    Uncle,

    If they are still selling XP, they have to still support it. I mean, do I really have to explain this to you???? So, as long as they are selling XP licenses, it's not a free ride, and they have to support it. If they aren't selling licenses, then how could any sales for a license be profit? What kind of pretzel logic is that? Either they are selling it, and profiting from it and supporting it, or they aren't selling it.


    However, even after they stop making it, if there is a security issue, they have to patch it and will release a fix. I still get fixes for Windows 2000. Do they still sell it?

    You are aware there is a virtual mode for running Windows XP in Windows 7, right? Just a guess, but Microsoft will probably want that work well, and will probably stay on top of it if there are issues there. More costs.

    Your logic with regards to costs regarding Microsoft licenses just shows you have no experience in this field. Development costs have to be considered as part of the licenses. There's also bandwidth for sending this data. And notifying certain customers of problems. And directly dealing with high profile accounts. Microsoft will send people directly to big companies (I have been part of this, this is not conjecture) to help with solutions, especially if it means selling more licenses. These are costs the incur, and all go against the profit of the OS. Where do you think the money comes from?

    It's a lot more complicated than someone would think without being part of the industry. Software support is expensive, software sales are also not free. The more licenses you sell, the more you have to support, and that increases support costs. The fact is, if Microsoft says they make x amount of dollars in profit for a sale of an item costing y amount of dollars, who are you to say they are wrong? Don't you think they know better than you or I do what their profits are? I wouldn't even care to take a guess, other than knowing they exist, and I have worked in this part of the industry. How would you know when you clearly have no experience or visibility into either Microsoft or the industry?

    Igot, they hire people based on what their call volume is, and pay careful attention to how long people have to wait to talk to people. So, yes, your license, on average, will have a cost to them. If they say it's $10, then I believe them, but I'd have no way of knowing what it is, with that volume. So, there's that cost, and it is pretty linear with the number of licenses. There is also development cost, and that's not really going to change very much based on number of users, but it does have to be shared. So, in essence, it goes down with more purchases. That's the part I think people get confused with - they figure it's already made, so if Microsoft sells the product, they shouldn't have to pay for the development costs. Let me put it in a way that makes more sense - when you buy Vista, you are paying for development costs for service packs, and fixes, and also, for Windows 7. When you bought Windows XP, you were paying for Vista, etc... Microsoft is constantly spending money on operating systems, and they are paid for by the sales of the version that is still selling. So, forget that they might not be doing more development on XP anymore, and it's paid for and you'll get a better understanding. They are STILL developing new operating systems, and most of the money goes to that. The other goes to fix packs, and service packs. Keep in mind, licenses have to pay for the next generation, or the company stagnates and dies. Obviously, with Microsoft's volumes, they don't need to charge nearly as much as they do, so I'm not defending their prices, just that there are costs involved. And before you say, but, even if I didn't buy the OS, they'd still have to make the next generation, just remember. If not you, then who? Who pays for development with that logic?

    Linux is written for free, basically, but, even so, people pay money for it so they can get support by the seller. That should illustrate this point, not compromise it. Red Hat costs money why? In a word, support. And people willingly pay for it.

  • 0 Hide
    igot1forya , June 14, 2009 7:57 AM
    Anyone here still pissed they paid money for Millennium? ;p
  • -2 Hide
    Uncle Meat , June 14, 2009 1:53 PM
    Quote:
    However, even after they stop making it, if there is a security issue, they have to patch it and will release a fix. I still get fixes for Windows 2000. Do they still sell it?


    This is my point exactly. The cost doesn't change, even if they are not selling any licenses.
  • 0 Hide
    Windaria , June 14, 2009 11:16 PM
    ta152hActually, there is a cost for selling a license; it's called support. All those folks at Microsoft that talk to you for free for a limited time have to be paid, and they wouldn't need to be paid unless people had licenses. More licenses, more support costs. Of course, Microsoft also has to figure in their development costs, not only in creating the software, but also supporting it with fixes (again, back to the "S" word). Then, they have to deal with legal fees, and fines from the EU, because they are so poor they always need to fine Microsoft so they survive. No licenses, no EU legal fees and fines. Selling licenses do have costs. It's not all profit.


    And then there's the biggest cost: funding the development of all the programs that people don't use, or don't want. After all, I never use Paint, or Internet Explorer, or well, shoot. Frankly, most everything that doesn't enable me to run the actual programs I do use.

    I mean, hardware prices continue to fall, even though they have to go in and fashion the hardware. MS OS prices continue to skyrocket, while lower-end releases have more and more important networking features stripped out that were in previous versions, despite the fact that there are more and more computers being sold, and the software only has to be developed once and shipped as many times as you like.
  • 0 Hide
    socalboomer , June 15, 2009 4:00 PM
    Salem80you're right..

    No he's not.

    Development team, programming time, all the costs associated with creating and supporting a massive software project?

    Yeah, that costs money. Gotta pay for it.
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