updated 01:10 pm EDT, Fri June 5, 2009
Best Buy Windows 7 upgrade
In advance of Windows 7's October 22nd release date, Best Buy has begun circulating an internal memo on upgrade options. At the core of the retailer's plans is the Technology Guarantee, which will provide buyers of Vista PCs and software packages with a free copy of Windows 7. The option will only apply for the Home Premium, Business or Ultimate editions of Vista however, and only between June 26th and October 22nd.
June 26th should also mark the beginning of an online presale for Windows 7, in which the Home Premium Upgrade will cost $50, and the Professional Upgrade $100. Deals will end July 11th, with the software shipping after the official launch. Presales should also be available from competing retailers, though the company avoids mentioning names.
An unusual aspect of the memo is Best Buy's proposed marketing angle, which describes the OS as more than "just a 'Vista that works,'" with benefits such as improved simplicity, performance and productivity. The memo may thus be a tacit admission that Vista was flawed; prior to the Service Pack 1 update, the software was frequently accused of problems like driver incompatibility and slow file transfers. The OS is still said to consume an unusual amount of RAM and CPU power.