The Cost of Sticking with Windows 10: Is It Worth It?

In a recent announcement, Microsoft revealed that it will continue to provide support for Windows 10 until October 14, 2025. While this may come as good news for some, there is a catch. Microsoft will require users to sign up for their Extended Security Updates (ESU) program if they wish to receive future security updates beyond that date. This means that users will have to pay a fee for continued support. In this article, we will explore the implications of this decision and discuss whether it is worth the cost to stick with Windows 10.

The upcoming Windows 10 22H2 version will mark the end of the Windows 10 release cycle. Microsoft has confirmed that this version will be supported until October next year. However, after that, users will need to subscribe to the ESU program to receive security fixes. The pricing for these subscriptions has not yet been announced, but past experiences with Windows 7 ESU subscriptions raise concerns about the potential costs for business owners who rely on Windows 10.

The pricing model for Windows 7 ESU subscriptions started at $25 per device in the first year and increased to a substantial $100 per device in the third year. If Microsoft follows a similar model for Windows 10 ESU subscriptions, it could result in excessive costs for business owners who want to keep their current Windows 10 systems secure beyond October next year. This raises questions about the affordability and fairness of Microsoft’s approach towards supporting their operating systems.

The Inclusion of Personal Users

One noteworthy aspect of this announcement is that Microsoft is allowing consumers to use the ESU program for the first time. While it is difficult to estimate the cost for personal users who run Windows 10 on their personal machines, there is hope that the pricing will be significantly cheaper compared to the business subscriptions. However, until the pricing is revealed, it remains uncertain whether personal users will find the cost justifiable for continued support.

While many users have already transitioned to Windows 11, a significant number still rely on Windows 10. According to the latest Steam hardware survey, 53.53 percent of respondents reported still using Windows 10. However, Microsoft’s decision to limit supported hardware for Windows 11 has left some users with unsupported PCs. Third-party methods exist to bypass these restrictions, but they are not accessible to all users. This raises concerns about the fairness of leaving users behind simply because their hardware does not meet the requirements.

With the requirement of paid ESU subscriptions for continued support, the question arises – is it worth sticking with Windows 10? The answer depends on various factors, such as the specific needs of businesses, the cost of ESU subscriptions, and the availability of alternative operating systems. Business owners must carefully evaluate the costs and benefits before committing to extended support for Windows 10.

Microsoft’s decision to offer extended support for Windows 10 through the ESU program comes with a price tag. While the cost of subscriptions remains unknown, concerns about excessive costs for businesses and limited support for personal users and incompatible hardware raise valid questions about the overall value of sticking with Windows 10. As the software landscape continues to evolve, users must weigh the benefits and drawbacks to make an informed decision about their operating system of choice.

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