Students Get a Deal on Windows 7

Microsoft launched sales promotions Thursday for Windows 7 in the U.S. and the U.K. — as well as in several other nations, that give deep discounts to students on upgrades to the new system as long as they have a valid e-mail address at a college or university.

The cost: $30 in the U.S., and £30 (pounds) in the U.K. The deal even gets better; students can choose from two higher-end upgrade editions — Windows 7 Home Premium or Windows 7 Professional — for the same price.

Students can begin pre-ordering Home Premium or Professional in the U.S. as of Thursday, September 17, while pre-orders in the U.K. will start on October 1. Both promotions will run until January 3, according to an e-mail from a Microsoft spokesperson. The one exception is Australia, where the offer will be available until March 31, 2010.

The savings can be significant, particularly for typically cash-strapped students.

For instance, the regular price for an upgrade to Windows 7 Home Premium in the U.S. is $120. That’s a savings of roughly $90 for U.S. pre-orders over the suggested retail price, when the student only pays $30. Likewise, Professional generally costs $200, so that constitutes a savings of $170. (Note, prices are usually one cent lower — so instead of $200, Professional actually lists at $199.99.)

“For a limited time, we are offering the LOWEST PRICE ($29.99 in the US) for Windows 7 exclusively to college and university students,” a Microsoft spokesperson said on the Windows 7 team blog Thursday.

Meanwhile, in the U.K., Microsoft will let students have the Home Premium upgrade, which lists for £90 pounds, for £30 — a savings of £60. Professional, in contrast, costs £190 at full retail, a savings of roughly £160 pounds.

Students who pre-order a Windows 7 Home Premium upgrade package under the offer can begin downloading the code on October 22, the date that Microsoft has scheduled for worldwide consumer availability of the new system.

Other nations where Microsoft is making the pre-order discount offer include Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Korea and Mexico.

In the U.S. the promotion began Thursday, while the U.K. program begins on October 1.

Other Windows 7 deals

Microsoft has run a number of sales promotions for Windows 7 already, even though the launch date is still five weeks away, including other retail discount pre-order programs for consumers, and free trial versions for corporate IT shops that have Volume Licenses along with Software Assurance contracts.

Information regarding the new promotion in the U.S. can be found here, while the U.K. offer is discussed here.

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