Windows 7 prices should come out mid-June

Those wondering how much Windows 7 is going to set them back have only a few weeks longer to wait - the prices for the six SKUs are expected to be revealed in mid-June.

TechARP said retailers were finding out prices this month and the public prices would be released next month. Retailers had to sign non-disclosure agreements to keep the prices under wraps until Microsoft makes the official announcement.

Though there are six versions of Windows 7, Microsoft has said there are two primary versions that should suit the majority of customers, Windows 7 Home Premium and Windows 7 Professional. Those are the two that will be sold through traditional outlets.

The other versions are Starter, Home Basic, Ultimate and Enterprise.

Whether the pricing for Windows 7 follows the pattern of Vista remains to be seen. Right now, Vista Home Basic costs $199.95; Vista Home Premium, $259.95; Vista Home Business, $299.95; and Vista Ultimate, $319.95. At least one expert has said he expects the prices to be higher than they were for Vista.

Many people skipped the XP upgrade to Vista, so the marketing should be especially heavy to that segment of the market, one might imagine. Whether those who shelled out for Vista not that long ago will be willing to part with another couple hundred bucks in these recessionary times is a big question mark.