Over at Gizmodo, Matt Buchanan has a come up with a cool strategy for ensuring that Windows 7 gets an enthusiastic reception when it ships: give it away. Well, sort of. He’s really only talking about giving it to Windows Vista owners, and he’d be satisfied if Microsoft just sold it to Vista users at a lowball price: $49.
In the past, I would have said that Microsoft making a new version of Windows into a freebie (or, at least, a cheapie) was unthinkable. Today, it still seems unlikely. But I like the idea, and it’s undeniable that the Windows launch game plan Microsoft used so successfully so many times in the past is obsolete. Like Matt, I’d love to see Microsoft streamline the number of Windows 7 versions out there to a few, easy-to-understand variants. And if it gives the OS a pricetag that’s surprisingly affordable, it would give lots of folks incentive to upgrade–in an era in which it’s easier than ever to be a happy computer user without owning the latest version of Mivrosoft Windows.