Microsoft is reportedly planning to introduce changes on how Windows 10 is offered to device manufacturers and consumers. According to a new report from Thurrott, internal documents from Microsoft revealed that Windows 10 will have at least five SKUs (Stock Keeping Unit) with new pricing on different hardware configuration.
The new SKUs include Entry available for $25, Value will cost $45, Core will be offered for $65.45, Core+ for $86.66, and the Advanced SKU will run for $101.
The Entry and Value SKUs will be available for devices, such as laptops, 2-in-1, and tablets running low-end processors like Intel Atom and Celeron with 4GB of memory. The Advanced SKU will be available for more capable processors like Intel Core i7, Core i9, or AMD Ryzen and Threadripper with 4K displays and a lot of memory.
Here’s the breakdown of the new Windows 10 lineup:
It’s important to note that these changes and prices are not aspects that regular consumers will have to worry about (though, it might affect pricing of new devices). Instead, these are changes that PC manufacturers will have to consider when building their devices.
Another interesting part of this story is that Microsoft is also planning to expand the editions of Windows 10 Home, which will also include “Windows 10 Home in S Mode, “and “Windows 10 Home Advanced.” While it’s not yet clear, it appears that Home Advanced will be a new variant targeted for more capable computers, such as gaming rigs that usually require the Pro version, and it might include some additional features.
In addition, Microsoft is planning to discontinue Windows 10 S, in favor of “S Mode,” which will be available on Windows 10 Pro as well as on Home.
According to the report, these licensing rules will become available to partners starting April 2, 2018, and the Windows 10 Home Advanced pricing will go into effect starting May 1, 2018.