One of my biggest gripes with Windows in past years has been the ridiculous amount of versions/SKU’s for Windows. It was confusing to both consumers and business customers, and I was concerned this would happen again to Windows 8. I was wrong and I am glad about that.
Today Microsoft announced the Windows 8 Editions and there are only a few to choose from: Windows 8, Windows 8 Pro and Windows RT.
For PCs and tablets powered by x86 processors (both 32 and 64 bit), we will have two editions: Windows 8 and Windows 8 Pro. For many consumers, Windows 8 will be the right choice. It will include all the features above plus an updated Windows Explorer, Task Manager, better multi-monitor support and the ability to switch languages on the fly (more details on this feature can be found in this blog post),which was previously only available in Enterprise/Ultimate editions of Windows. For China and a small set of select emerging markets, we will offer a local language-only edition of Windows 8.
Windows RT is the ARM version and will only be available on PC’s and Tablets pre-installed. This edition will also include a touch optimized version of Office.
I’m glad they have simplified Windows 8, and I’m looking even more forward to getting the final release.
Check the Windows Blog for a comparison of features between editions.