Subscribe / Unsubscribe Enewsletters | Login | Register

Pencil Banner

Dell takes one last shot at selling Windows 7 Home Premium PCs

Gregg Keizer | Oct. 28, 2014
Just days before Microsoft orders OEMs to stop building new PCs with Windows 7 Home Premium, Dell tried one last time to spur sales using the lure of the five-year-old consumer OS.

Just days before Microsoft orders OEMs to stop building new PCs with Windows 7 Home Premium, Dell tried one last time to spur sales using the lure of the five-year-old consumer OS.

In a banner that ran on its website over the weekend, Dell promoted Windows 7 systems with the tagline, "Windows 7 for the win," and discounts of up to 30% in a sale that runs until early Thursday.

Dell listed nine notebook and desktop PCs that come equipped with Windows 7 Home Premium, the consumer-grade version that is to be retired by computer makers on Friday, Oct. 31. The least expensive is an Inspiron 15-in. laptop discounted by 26% to $399, the most expensive a 17-in. notebook reduced 21% to $899.99.

Meanwhile, the two other OEMs (original equipment manufacturers) in the top three worldwide — No. 1 Lenovo and No. 2 Hewlett-Packard — barely bothered with Windows 7 Home Premium: Lenovo showed none for sale on its U.S. online store, while HP offered just one equipped with the consumer operating system.

Earlier this year, Microsoft set Oct. 31 as the end-of-sales date for new Windows 7 PCs. Before that, the company had first posted the date, then retracted it, then restored it only for consumer systems. Microsoft left the date blank for the halt of Windows 7 Professional installed on new PCs, saying only it was "not yet established."

In February, Microsoft said it would give a one-year notice before it demanded that OEMs stop selling PCs with Windows 7 Professional. Under that rule — and since Microsoft has yet to deliver the promised warning — computer makers will be able to continue selling PCs with Windows 7 Professional until at least late October 2015.

An even longer extension is likely: Although the new Windows 10 will be shipping by then, business will be hesitant to immediately move to the new OS. Gartner, for example, has said that most enterprises won't start migrating to Windows 10 until 2016 at the earliest.

With corporations turning a cold shoulder to Windows 8 — and the ability to conduct "in-place" upgrades from Windows 7 to Windows 10 — it's probable that those customers will want to continue to purchase Windows 7 Professional PCs after October 2015, and that Microsoft will let OEMs oblige.

It's not surprising that OEMs continue to market Windows 7-based machines, or that Microsoft has extended their use of Windows 7 Professional by almost 12 months so far. PC sales have been in a multi-year slump and neither OEMs nor Microsoft will pass up selling systems, even if that means the computers run an OS that has exhausted nearly half its 10-year support cycle.

 

1  2  Next Page 

Sign up for CIO Asia eNewsletters.