Windows 10 upgrade countdown – Why millions of users face an expensive start to the year

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13 shares, 92 points

Upgrading to the latest version of Windows 10 is about to become vital and those who haven’t made the switch are facing an expensive start to 2020. Microsoft is about to end all support for its ageing Windows 7 operating system and that means anyone still using this popular software face an increased risk of security issues, cyber-attacks and annoying bugs.

January 14, 2020, is the date that the US firm has set for the big change and the advice for anyone using Windows 7 is to upgrade as soon as possible to avoid and cyber issues in the future.

Although some readers have contacted us to say there are hidden ways to upgrade to Windows 10 for free, the official stance from Microsoft is that its promotional no-cost upgrade offer expired on July 29, 2016.

The firm also says that for most Windows 7 users, moving to a new device with Windows 10 will be the recommended path forward.

“Today’s PCs are faster, lightweight yet powerful, and more secure, with an average price that’s considerably less than that of the average PC over nine years ago,” Microsoft said in an email sent to us.

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Windows 10 update could prove costly for some users (Image: MICROSOFT)

Even if you don’t fancy forking out for a new laptop which will come pre-loaded with Windows 10 there’s also a pretty pricey fee for the official upgrade software.

Those wanting to install Windows 10 Home edition on their current hardware will need to pay £119.99 which is licensed to one PC. And that’s the cheapest available option. This price rises to £219.99 for Windows 10 Pro and £339 for Windows 10 Pro for Workstations.

It’s unclear if Microsoft will run any kind of price cuts or promotions nearer to the Windows 7 end date but, for now, you will face a pretty hefty bill if you want to upgrade.

Of course, Microsoft does offer some concessions around its Windows 10 upgrade. For example, people with accessibility issues are able to upgrade to the new operating system, which offers much better support for these users, without paying the upgrade fee.

Explaining more about the end of Windows 7 and why it is no longer offering updates, the US firm said: “Microsoft made a commitment to provide 10 years of product support for Windows 7 when it was released on October 22, 2009. “When this 10-year period ends, Microsoft will discontinue Windows 7 support so that we can focus our investment on supporting newer technologies and great new experiences.

“The specific end of support day for Windows 7 will be January 14, 2020. After that, technical assistance and software updates from Windows Update that help protect your PC will no longer be available for the product.

“Microsoft strongly recommends that you move to Windows 10 sometime before January 2020 to avoid a situation where you need service or support that is no longer available.

“You can continue to use Windows 7, but after support has ended, your PC will become more vulnerable to security risks and viruses.

“Windows will continue to start and run, but you will no longer receive software updates, including security updates, from Microsoft.”

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