Even though Windows 7 looks like it will be the Microsoft OS that will finally take over the PC world (again), it appears as though the road hasn’t run out yet for Windows XP.
For one year after the general availability of Windows 7 final, OEMs will still be able to pack Windows XP in with netbooks.
"OEMs that are using Windows XP on netbooks will have the ability to install Windows XP for one year — 12 months — after Windows 7 general availability," Mike Nash, corporate vice president of Microsoft's Windows product management group, said during a conference call with reporters, quoted by ComputerWorld.
Microsoft has been developing Windows 7 with netbooks in mind, even creating a version called Starter Edition which carries with it a license cost that’s supposed to keep prices low.
According to Microsoft, 96 percent of new netbooks sold bundle Windows XP. The company’s choice to keep XP going might be a hedged bet in case Windows 7 doesn’t take off on netbooks.
If it’s performance that netbook buyers are worried about, however, Nash said that Windows 7 should perform well enough on the Atom-powered machines.
"It's been a long time since we've had a version of Windows that will actually run better [than the previous version] on the hardware that most customers have," Nash said.