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Best Buy to Offer Free Windows 7 Upgrades

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 13 comments

Best Buy's prepping for Windows 7 madness.

The computer enthusiasts already know about Windows 7 and why they should be excited about it, and now that’s leaking out to the mainstream consumer – the type of consumer that will walk into a brick and mortar shop to find out more. Best Buy is preparing itself for those consumers and has issued a memo to employees detailing its plans for Windows 7.

“Microsoft is launching Windows 7 in mid-October 2009. This new operating system isn't just a "Vista that works" program - it's a new operating system with improved productivity, functionality and creativity that uses less computer resources. In simpler terms, this means less waiting, fewer clicks and less complexity for end users.”

Engadget, which secured the memo, is amused that Best Buy implied that Windows Vista doesn’t work. While there’s no question in our minds that the upcoming version of Windows is better than the one it replaces, it’s still interesting to see how Best Buy’s corporate headquarters is spinning the OS to its workers.

The key important part of the memo is that Best Buy details an upgrade program for those who purchase a new PC with Vista Home Premium, Vista Business, or Vista Ultimate. Starting June 26, those specific consumers will qualify for a free Windows 7 upgrade, however Best Buy didn’t specify if they would be receiving the equivalent version as a free upgrade.

Interestingly, those who purchase standalone copies of the aforementioned Windows Vista versions will also qualify for the free upgrade.

From June 26 to July 11, Best Buy will be pre-selling Windows 7 on its website. The Home Premium Upgrade pre-sell will be $49.99 and the Professional Upgrade will be $99.99.

Microsoft hasn’t yet announced pricing or upgrade dates, so this could either be Best Buy letting out on unannounced information or simply trying to get the jump on the competition. Either way, those who are looking to pick up a computer from Best Buy should hold off until June 26.

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  • -3 Hide
    norbs , June 8, 2009 8:44 PM
    Basically it's a working more efficient vista with a improved UI.

    They are not that far off. I never liked vista and I thought it would grow on me but never did. Only thing I have that uses vista is my media center because I wanted to run 8 GB ram and needed and x64 OS so I could use it almost server like and not worry about constant hard drive swapping.
  • -1 Hide
    Wayoffbase , June 8, 2009 9:18 PM
    Quote:
    The Home Premium Upgrade pre-sell will be $49.99 and the Professional Upgrade will be $99.99


    If that is standard pricing for the upgrade versions, that is extremely nice. Vista home premium upgrades are around $100 or so, I think they were higher when I bought mine at launch. FYI you can immediately install it right over an unregistered copy of XP, and I think we all have one of those laying around. (I'm an adult now, I don't pirate anymore, but still...)
  • 0 Hide
    anamaniac , June 8, 2009 11:38 PM
    WayoffbaseIf that is standard pricing for the upgrade versions, that is extremely nice. Vista home premium upgrades are around $100 or so, I think they were higher when I bought mine at launch. FYI you can immediately install it right over an unregistered copy of XP, and I think we all have one of those laying around. (I'm an adult now, I don't pirate anymore, but still...)


    Neat idea.
    I have both a XP and Vista disc laying around.
    You can legally put M$ OS on 3 different computers so M$ claims. The Vista is for another computer, but I put it on my current computer, and get the $50 dollar upgrade. Yay! Nothing illegal done. Morally? Maybe. It's no better than ripping to get a cheaper version...
  • 0 Hide
    mr_tuel , June 9, 2009 1:29 AM
    The pre-sell thing is awesome, I'll have to get my hands on one... wonder if I can use my BBY discount on it ;) 
  • 0 Hide
    Netherscourge , June 9, 2009 1:56 AM
    Can you upgrade from XP to Windows 7? Or Vista ONLY?

    In other words, would XP owners have to buy the FULL version to upgrade to Windows 7?
  • 2 Hide
    blazeorangeman , June 9, 2009 3:05 AM
    I work for Best Buy and honestly this is the first time hearing about this...I'll have to check my work email Wednesday when I go in. However I've already been telling customers to hold off if they could because of the inevitability of an upgrade path from Vista, it doesn't really matter though because they tend not to listen to me. Finally I can laugh at the customers who think they know more then me, when they come in and yell at our management. They can't say I told them so.
  • 0 Hide
    neiroatopelcc , June 9, 2009 8:04 AM
    norbsBasically it's a working more efficient vista with a improved UI. They are not that far off. I never liked vista and I thought it would grow on me but never did. Only thing I have that uses vista is my media center because I wanted to run 8 GB ram and needed and x64 OS so I could use it almost server like and not worry about constant hard drive swapping.

    imo win 7 is so much more than what you feel it is. From where I'm standing, vista is an xp with a new shell and even less compatibility (and xp was really bad in that regard when it was new) - windows 7 is the new system. It's the operating system where not just the graphics, but the engine as well has been upgraded. I've got to say that I've never been as content with an RC than I am with this one. It's got higher quality that many a retail product from other vendors - or their own office package for that matter.

    Anyway. As for this best buy article - I rather find their description in line with my thoughts of it really. And I did use vista every day for 2 years before installing win 7
  • 0 Hide
    jerther , June 9, 2009 6:30 PM
    BlazeOrangeManI work for Best Buy and honestly this is the first time hearing about this...I'll have to check my work email Wednesday when I go in. However I've already been telling customers to hold off if they could because of the inevitability of an upgrade path from Vista, it doesn't really matter though because they tend not to listen to me. Finally I can laugh at the customers who think they know more then me, when they come in and yell at our management. They can't say I told them so.


    Yeah but you can't blame them, I went to a store similar to best buy and made the computer guy there beleive that windows 3.11 was a vista update... Don'T know about best buy but large "general" stores like these have a bad reputation as for knowledge of what they're selling :) 
  • -2 Hide
    antilycus , June 9, 2009 6:37 PM
    I'll stick with Xp, thanks.
  • -1 Hide
    neiroatopelcc , June 10, 2009 9:13 AM
    jertherYeah but you can't blame them, I went to a store similar to best buy and made the computer guy there beleive that windows 3.11 was a vista update... Don'T know about best buy but large "general" stores like these have a bad reputation as for knowledge of what they're selling

    Well there's certainly a difference between an enthusiast with 10-15 years of experience, and some late teen guy that's just happened to get the job. But, let's face it - that late teen guy still knows more about what he's selling than the middleaged family mom he's selling to. People still believe that they need windows 2007 to open docx documents in their mail, so a guy that can distinguish between windows and office certainly knows more than the buyer.

    AntilycusI'll stick with Xp, thanks.


    Suit yourself. I'm sure it goes perfectly well with your ford angila and your am radio.
  • -1 Hide
    waffle911 , June 17, 2009 12:38 AM
    neiroatopelccimo win 7 is so much more than what you feel it is. From where I'm standing, vista is an xp with a new shell and even less compatibility (and xp was really bad in that regard when it was new) - windows 7 is the new system. It's the operating system where not just the graphics, but the engine as well has been upgraded. I've got to say that I've never been as content with an RC than I am with this one. It's got higher quality than many a retail product from other vendors - or their own office package for that matter.

    The RC has better quality than their own current retail OS ever did.
    But you're kind of wrong on a couple points. Windows 7 at its core is really Vista 2.0. Vista was completely new from the ground up and shared very little with XP. Windows Longhorn, the original early development version Vista, was based on Windows XP, but hey later decided to scrap that and start fresh because there were more problems to fix than there were upgrades to make, so they scrapped that and started fresh. That is exactly why it was so problematic, because all that new code introduces new and unforeseen bugs and compatibility issues. Windows 7 is entirely based on Vista while adding a lot more features and redoing the GUI so that it actually makes some sort of sense, on top of fixing most of Vista's issues.
    In short, Vista was originally going to be a face-lift of XP but ended up with a brand-new engine and chassis instead; but they hadn't refined it enough by the time it went on sale. Windows 7 is everything Vista was supposed to be from the start, and is compatible with Vista software and hardware to boot.
    Why not call it Vista 2, then? Because "Vista" is synonymous with "problematic" in the public's mind. It's a PR nightmare, and MS needs to dissociate Win7 from Vista as much as possible if it hopes to repair its public image. Ironic, given the meaning of the word "vista" and it's close relation to the word "window". Windows with a view. Exactly what it's supposed to be a view of seems to be the root of the problem, because all I see is a post-apocalyptic wasteland of 1's and 0's randomly strewn about. Thanks, but I'm gonna keep the curtains drawn, if you don't mind.
  • 0 Hide
    neiroatopelcc , June 17, 2009 7:12 AM
    but if it's new from the ground up, how come so many of the core elements look exactly the same as in xp? From where I'm standing vista is just an xp system with a better gui and vddm support.
    If they truely replaced the engine and chassis, I find it rather odd that they left everything to work in the same way except for a new air filter and some metallic paint.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , March 12, 2011 1:36 PM
    When I purchased my computer from Best Buy, I was entitled to receive a free upgrade to Windows 7, which was unavailable at that time. How do I receive this free upgrade?