Windows 10 free no more, will cost $119 after July 29..

When Microsoft launched the Windows 10 last year, it made a historic decision to give it away as a free upgrade. The offer was for one year and that is (most likely) ending on July 29.

“The free upgrade offer to Windows 10 was a first for Microsoft, helping people upgrade faster than ever before. And time is running out. The free upgrade offer will end on July 29… After July 29th, you’ll be able to continue to get Windows 10 on a new device, or purchase a full version of Windows 10 Home for $119,” Yusuf Mehdi, who is corporate vice president of Microsoft Windows, wrote on the company blog.

In the same blog post, Mehdi also dubbed the Windows 10 a big success. Although for something as significant as “free Windows”, the new OS seems to be a mixed bag from an outsider’s point of view. Mehdi said that the Windows 10 is now running on over 300 million devices. These probably include the mobiles that run Windows 10 Mobile.

Apart from the big number, Mehdi also shared a few other facts related to Windows 10. He noted:

— Over 63 billion minutes were spent on Microsoft Edge in March, with 50 per cent growth in minutes since the last quarter. Microsoft had launched the Edge browser along with the Windows 10. It replaces the much-used but not-similarly-loved Internet Explorer.

Cortana, the personal assistant that is part of Windows 10, has answered over 6 billion questions so far.

— There has been a talk that Windows 10 is not great for gamers. But Mehdi says numbers tell a different story. He writes, ” People are playing games on Windows 10 more than ever before, with over 9 billion hours of gameplay on Windows 10 since launch.”

For Microsoft Windows 10 is a new beginning. The new operating system has been the company’s attempt to turn Windows into a kind of platform that can be called service. Under the leadership of Satya Nadella, Microsoft is trying to re-invent itself into a company that provides services like Office 365, which are updated regularly and which earn the company a steady stream of income through subscriptions. Microsoft has not yet moved the Windows to subscription model but there are hints that in future — 1 or 2 odd years — this could be the point where it is headed.

Also, with Windows 10 Microsoft was attempting to woo back desktop users who were miffed at the company due to Windows 8, which tried to foist a new user interface on traditional computers. This interface was more suitable for mobiles and tablets or for the devices with the touchscreen. But Windows 10 brings back some of the features, such as the Start Menu and virtual desktops, that are relevant to traditional computer users.

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