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Beware the gotchas in Microsoft Windows 7 upgrade, family pack pricing

On July 31, Microsoft went public with two key pieces of Windows 7 pricing information it had been holding back: The cost of its Family Pack and Anytime Upgrade licenses. My blogging colleague Ed Bott has all the gory details on both, as well as a couple of pointed criticisms about Microsoft's announcement.

On July 31, Microsoft went public with two key pieces of Windows 7 pricing information it had been holding back: The cost of its Family Pack and Anytime Upgrade licenses.

My blogging colleague Ed Bott has all the gory details on both, so I won't try to repeat all the specifics here. (The Cliff Notes version: Family Pack is $150 for three PCs. Anytime Upgrades are roughly the same price as they were with Vista -- with the notable exception of the upgrade to Windows 7 Ultimate.) What I will repeat, however, are a couple of gotchas that are part of Bott's post.

Bott said:

"Overall, I think Microsoft has blown a couple of excellent opportunities with today’s announcements. The Family Pack offer is an excellent deal and reflects today’s consumer landscape: people have multiple PCs in their households. So why make this a limited-quantity offer? The Family Pack should be a permanent addition to the Windows consumer lineup."

Regarding the Anytime Upgrades -- via which users can move up to a more feature-rich, pricier version of Windows 7 after they bought an intial license -- Bott also had some critical words regarding Microsoft's new listings:

"The upgrade prices from consumer (Windows 7) editions are reasonable; the prices for Ultimate edition are not."

(Neowin notes things are even worse if you're in the European Union/UK, where Microsoft's announced Anytime Upgrade prices are double what they are for the U.S. users.)

TechNet and MSDN users are on tap to get the official final Windows 7 bits next week. I'd think Microsoft must be close to done trickling out its Windows 7 news. But it's still a long way until October 22....