Windows 8 to come in only three editions: Windows 8, Windows 8 Pro and Windows RT

Pigs are flying in Redmond today following the announcement that Windows 8 will only have three SKUS: Windows 8, Windows 8 Pro and Windows RT (known as Windows on ARM). That’s right, Microsoft has finally decided to streamline it’s previously stupid offering and go straight to the point after many years of complains from users, OEMs and various other actors in the tech industry.
Windows 8 will be the basic version will include most of the essential features that 90% of the users will need while Windows 8 Pro will include all the features in Windows 8 plus features for encryption, virtualization, PC management and domain connectivity. Surprisingly Windows Media Center will apparently only be available as an economical “media pack” add-on to Windows 8 Pro.

Windows RT formerly known as Windows On ARM will only be come per-installed on devices/tablets equipped with ARM based SoC but will be the only Windows 8 SKU to have the Office suite included. This version will only be able to run applications build using the recently introduced WinRT runtime. Hit the break for the full list of features supported by each versions:

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Download the Windows 8 Consumer Preview now

It’s finally here! The Windows 8 Consumer Preview is now available for download in English, French German Chinese and Japanese. The whole thing weights less that 4Gb for the ISO and around 1.9GB if you use the installer so hit the break and start downloading it and have some fun. Wanted to also let you know that I going to post more about it in the coming hours and days as I now own a Samsung Slate on which I’m installing the Consumer preview right now.

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