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Will technology ever catch up?

Vista: Australian Prices for Windows Vista OEM

Posted by cascadehush on January 3, 2007

At least one major Australian IT distributor has listed their wholesale prices for the OEM version of Vista and is due to have stock by the end of the month. OEM versions of windows are intended to be sold with a computer, and are cheeper than boxed retail versions. However, many online discounters will sell the OEM versions, allowing you to pick up a legal (or semi-legal) copy of windows fairly cheep.

I’m not going to reveal the wholesale prices, but the following is a rough guide to the retail cost of Windows Vista OEM. This is the amount that a legit widows license will contribute to the cost of a whitebox system as built and supplied by your friendly local PC sale and repair shop.

Vista Home Basic $159
Vista Home Premium $199
Vista Business $259
Vista Ultimate $349

At this price, Vista Home Basic is more expensive than XP Home, and most people will want Vista Home Premium at least, which means that the average home user will be paying about $70 more for windows than they do now. And if you want a budget system, you’ll have to add to that a cheap graphics card for about $100 to get the best of the new features. XP Home was quite happy with onboard graphics.

In that sense, midrange systems (which are likely to have a graphics card anyway) are looking like they will be much better value than low end systems (which typically relied on onboard graphics to keep the prices low). This is not necessary a bad thing for the industry.

Online discounters could slash Vista prices by about 10-20% off these values. I have no news about boxed retail versions or upgrade versions. Typically a full boxed version is about twice the price of the OEM version and an upgrade price is somewhere in-between.

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