Now that the commercial release of Microsoft's Vista operating system is just around the corner
), the question on most people's minds is, "how much is it gonna cost me?" Fortunately, the titular Ed Bott of "Ed Bott's Microsoft Report" over at ZDNet blogs came across some rather interesting information on that very topic this morning; it appears that Microsoft Canada's website accidentally posted the SKUs and matching prices (in Canadian dollars, of course) for all of the forthcoming flavors of Vista
. Although the items have since been removed, Bott managed to copy down the prices, and they read as follows: $499 for Ultimate, $379 for Business, $299 for Home Premium, and $259 for Home Basic, with the corresponding upgrades listed at $299, $249, $199, and $129, respectively. Now keep in mind that these are Canadian prices for the Canadian market, so simply doing the currency conversions won't give us an accurate idea of what these packages will cost in the US. In order to put things in perspective, Bott compared the relative prices of future Vista versions with current XP versions in both markets, and extrapolated likely US pricing from that data. Based on his calculations, retail pricing for the full / upgraded flavors of Vista in America should look something like this: Ultimate going for $349 / $199, Business at $269 / $179, Home Premium for $239 / $139, and Home Basic priced around $199 / $99 -- in other words, not much more than you'd be paying for XP today, and nowhere near the high of $450
that'd we'd previously heard.