Microsoft Windows 10 will be a free upgrade for a lot of people with genuine Windows OS. For pirated versions, Windows 10 will cost $119 for the Home version and $199 for Windows 10 Professional. That should be around Rs 8,000 and Rs 12,000 respectively.
But it won’t be a surprise if Microsoft goes for a more competitive pricing in countries like India where it is still struggling to get over the prevalence of piracy. A Rs 4,999 pricing should be what Microsoft must aim for if they want to really convert the market in India. However, new users will not have to worry much as they will have the option of buying an affordable new device with Windows 10 coming free, as Microsoft is doing with the 2-in-1s now.
Microsoft also has a serious challenge making people understand the advantages of using the new OS. Windows 8, despite the initial promise it showed, has proven to be a dud. The much hyped live tiles are seldom evoked on PCs, especially those used in offices. There is just no need to bring them to life.
And for those at work, the lack of the Start button as they knew has proved to be a constant pain.
In Windows 10, users are being lured by the sweet-talking Cortana, what Redmond calls the “world’s first truly personal digital assistant”. Great. But don’t be disappointed if she does not make it to India. On Windows Phone, she is still a distant dream though announced early last year.
The other new feature is the Edge browser. Another uphill climb, as the world is now on Google Chrome. While Firefox has been digging its own grave, none of the other browsers have been able to get as popular as Chrome. And a big part of Chrome’s success is sheer unwieldiness of Internet Explorer.
No one wants to open it unless a government agency or bank forces you to do so for accessing their website. That is the kind of struggle Edge faces. The good thing is that it is new and refreshing and hopefully won’t be hyphenated with IE.
Xbox Live and the integrated Xbox App won’t really interest users in India. Photos, videos, music and maps have all been upgrades on Windows 10, but they can’t be the reason why someone will shift to the new OS.
That is where Windows 10 lacks a big, highly innovative draw. At the moment it feels like a fix of Windows 8. Microsoft will have to ensure that people don’ look at its “Best Windows Ever” as just a mistake being corrected.
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