Home Microsoft To Offer Free Windows 10 Upgrades For A Year After Release

Microsoft To Offer Free Windows 10 Upgrades For A Year After Release

Windows 10, Microsoft’s attempt to atone for its Windows 8 sins while also positioning itself for the mobile future it’s never really grasped, will be available as a free upgrade for its first year after release.

Microsoft vice president Terry Myerson announced the upgrade plan at a major Windows 10 event at the company’s headquarters in Redmond, Wash. The upgrade will be available to any computer running Windows 8.1 or Windows 7, plus smartphones running Windows Phone 8.1.

The free-upgrade plan, which mirrors Apple’s decision a year and a half ago to distribute its own software upgrades at no charge, is a huge gamble for Microsoft. Sales of Windows licenses represent a goodly chunk of the company’s revenues.

But the company clearly felt the need to make a major play for developers, who so far have largely shunned Microsoft’s mobile platforms and whose allegiance to desktop Windows apps remains in question. If the plan works as intended, the free upgrades should drag most Windows users onto Microsoft’s latest and greatest operating system, making it a big, unified and presumably more attractive target for app developers.

“This makes Windows the most attractive development platform ever,” Myerson said. Some of Microsoft’s competitors will doubtless beg to differ. But it’s still a huge move.

Photo by David Hamilton for ReadWrite

About ReadWrite’s Editorial Process

The ReadWrite Editorial policy involves closely monitoring the tech industry for major developments, new product launches, AI breakthroughs, video game releases and other newsworthy events. Editors assign relevant stories to staff writers or freelance contributors with expertise in each particular topic area. Before publication, articles go through a rigorous round of editing for accuracy, clarity, and to ensure adherence to ReadWrite's style guidelines.

Get the biggest tech headlines of the day delivered to your inbox

    By signing up, you agree to our Terms and Privacy Policy. Unsubscribe anytime.

    Tech News

    Explore the latest in tech with our Tech News. We cut through the noise for concise, relevant updates, keeping you informed about the rapidly evolving tech landscape with curated content that separates signal from noise.

    In-Depth Tech Stories

    Explore tech impact in In-Depth Stories. Narrative data journalism offers comprehensive analyses, revealing stories behind data. Understand industry trends for a deeper perspective on tech's intricate relationships with society.

    Expert Reviews

    Empower decisions with Expert Reviews, merging industry expertise and insightful analysis. Delve into tech intricacies, get the best deals, and stay ahead with our trustworthy guide to navigating the ever-changing tech market.