Official: Windows 7 upgrades not available in Europe

Redmond (WA) – As reported on TG Daily yesterday, Microsoft today confirmed it will not offer upgrade versions of its upcoming Windows 7 to customers in Europe, forcing them to do clean installs.

While customers elsewhere in the world will be able to run a simple upgrade install, preserving their data, settings and programs, Europeans will have to make manual backups and reinstall software after installing the new OS, Microsoft saying that its efforts to comply with competition regulations meant it could not do so in Europe.

Microsoft UK’s John Curran said that the company would not be able to offer an upgrade product within Europe because it was trying to comply with European competition regulations and that only the full version of the software will be available to Europeans.

Although Win 7E, the full European version of Win7 with Internet Explorer taken out, will be priced the same as an upgrade version in other regions, the need to perform a complicated manual install will inevitably hit sales.

A Microsoft spokesman told TG Daily: “We will not have a separate upgrade SKU for the packaged retail product versions of Windows 7 in Europe at GA (General Availability).  But we will be offering upgrade pricing on our full licenses to make sure that European customers who want to upgrade have the pricing options available in the rest of the world.”

Brad Brooks, Corporate VP for Windows Consumer Marketing at Microsoft, added: “We wanted to make sure that all of our customers got Windows 7 at the same time. And because of what needed to occur around testing of Windows 7E, it became very clear that we would not be able to offer a retail upgrade version of that piece of software on October 22nd.

“So, we had a choice to make. Either we delayed the launch of Windows 7 in Europe or that we brought it all together and did something different. So, what we decided to do is do something different. So in Europe we’re going to basically offer Windows 7E full version at upgrade prices.”

Calls to EU spokespersons remained unanswered at press time.

US pricing for Windows 7, announced earlier today, is as follows:

Windows 7 Home Premium (Upgrade): $119.99
Windows 7 Professional (Upgrade): $199.99
Windows 7 Ultimate (Upgrade): $219.99
Windows 7 Home Premium (Full): $199.99
Windows 7 Professional (Full): $299.99
Windows 7 Ultimate (Full): $319.99

See also:
EU shoots self, users in foot in MS feud