Microsoft: Pirates Still Get Free Windows 10

Microsoft Windows 10

Did you pirate your copy of Windows? (It’s okay, you can tell us.) If so, Microsoft will still give you a free upgrade to the upcoming Windows 10, due sometime this summer.

“We’re upgrading all qualified PCs, genuine and non-genuine, to Windows 10,” Terry Myerson, Microsoft’s executive vice president of operating systems, told Reuters in a phone interview.

Microsoft likely hopes the move will increase Windows 10 adoption in China, where a large percentage of PCs run pirated versions of Windows. On a global level, a free upgrade could translate into a rapid adoption rate for the OS, which must become a blockbuster hit in order for Microsoft to move past the anemic response to Windows 8.

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While Windows 10 could enjoy fast uptake on PCs, Microsoft faces more of an uphill battle when it comes to tablets, where the company owns only a very small percentage of the overall market. Although Windows 8 was engineered to appeal to touch-screen users, it ultimately failed to threaten either Apple iOS or Google Android for tablet supremacy. With Windows 10, Microsoft hopes for a second shot at mobile.

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3 Responses to “Microsoft: Pirates Still Get Free Windows 10”

  1. UncaAlby

    Wait a sec, Microsoft want to give their OS away for free in order to “move past the anemic response to Windows 8.”

    Say what?

    Isn’t this like losing money on every sale, but hey that’s OK you make it up on volume?

    • Ha, funny – but I think the humor derives from a lack of understanding of their strategy. The move represents a fundamental shift in MS’s business model. What they’re after is increasing the adoption of their OS both broadly and in the mobile/tablet segment in particular, not to increase OS-related revenues, but to enhance the value proposition of developing MS-based applications. If Windows 10 rapidly becomes the predominant MS OS, developers will have a larger potential market for their apps and will not have to worry as much about backward compatibility – two significant advantages over the current state of affairs. I think another consideration motivating MS’s decision to offer free Windows 10 upgrades, though, is to recapture some of the goodwill lost on the very disappointing Windows 8 OS.