Notebooks powered by Windows with Bing that are over 14” will likely increase in price due to new licensing price changes. Until now Windows with Bing has been free on devices under 9” and discounted on larger devices for original equipment manufacturers (OEM’s). As a result the final price point was lower for consumers. Having a free or discounted version of the Windows 8.1 operating system available is a main reason that devices such as the HP Stream can sell for under $100.
The new licensing will restrict Windows for Bing to notebooks that are 14” or smaller and will add a price increase to some devices. At first glance this change doesn’t seem like it would affect that many device’s prices but “The Register” claims that close to 80 percent of devices in the UK running Windows with Bing were 15”+ devices.
Discounted operating system licenses and free versions of software create a complicated balance for large companies. Offering operating system’s licenses for free leads to low cost products that help get users onto the Microsoft ecosystem but at some point they need to turn users into consumers who spend money.Further reading: HP Stream, Notebooks, Windows with Bing