Microsoft Corp Quietly Ends Windows 7 Retail Distribution

Microsoft Corp Ends Windows 7 Retail DistributionMicrosoft Corp has ended the retail sales of its Windows 7. The company did not make any announcement to the press; instead it simply posted a notice on its online site. The retail end of sales of the operating system was carried out on October 30.

In adherence to its own tradition, Microsoft observes a deadline for ending sales of PCs that are preinstalled with Windows 7. That date would be on October 30 next year. After that day, shipping of licenses to original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) would be completely stopped.

The software giant defined this practice in 2010. According to the company, it would stop retailing an older operating system a year after the official launch of new software. It would then stop delivery of the previous Windows system to OEMs after two years of the new version launch. For the case of Windows 7, Microsoft launched its successor, Windows 8, in October 2012.

End of sales

However, in general, the date for end of retail sales of an operating system could be considered as just a formality. That is because most online retailers continuously sell packaged copies of the old operating system, not just for months, but even for years after the end of its retail sales.

That is the reason why you may realize that online retailers like Amazon.com are still offering and selling Windows 7 OS. In fact, many of those e-commerce companies are still selling copies of much older operating systems like Windows XP and Windows Vista.

At times, Microsoft even extends retail sales of the operating system. That is when it advises customers to purchase the software through PC makers. Basically, old software products can still be purchased through those OEMs until the deadline comes when sales of PCs with those old preinstalled software is ended.

Buying from PC makers

Most PC makers like Hewlett-Packard, Lenovo, and Dell are set to discontinue Windows 7 PC sales in October 2014. Logically, those manufacturers would make Windows 8 or Windows 8.1 as their products’ default. This should not be a cause of worry for users of Windows 7. That is because the 2009 operating system would still remain as a standard. The system would still be fully operational and reliable.

At the end of the previous month, it was estimated that up to 46.6% of PCs around the world operate on Windows 7, based on data released by Net Applications, an online measurement vendor. That represents 51.3% of total volume of PCs that are running on Windows.

Drew is a regular contributor covering trending topics.