Microsoft Announces Two, Three, Four, or Five Editions of Windows 8

Microsoft has announced the editions for Windows 8. I was just reading one of the newsletters I receive and saw the following three headlines one after the other:

With headlines like these it seems clear that there will be a number of editions of Windows 8 and that the producers of the newsletter wanted to makes sure they announced the right number! They just need to hope there doesn’t end up being five editions!

Hopefully for Microsoft’s sake, the actual release won’t be as confused as the information around the number of editions that will be released.

According the Microsoft Windows Blog there will be multiple editions.

For the x86 platform there will be two editions, Windows 8 (the official name now) and Windows 8 Pro.

According to the blog, for China and a small set of emerging markets, there will also be a local-language-only edition of Windows 8. This could be construed as a third edition.

The big news that Microsoft has been trumpeting is the ability to run Windows 8 on ARM processors. A Windows RT edition will be pre-installed on PCs and tablets using the ARM processor.

Finally, as a note in the Windows Blog, there is also the statement that there will be “an edition of Windows 8 specifically for those enterprise customers with Software Assurance agreements.”

If you do the math, you’ll see that the total seems to be five! As such, the newsletter (not one of ours) seems to have missed the actual number with their buckshot headlines! Of course, it could be argued that the emerging markets edition doesn’t count as an edition. You could also argue that the Enterprise edition is the Windows 8 Pro addition with added items.

Time will tell how many editions there will be and how we will count them. The real question will be around how many people decide to adopt it.

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