Just a quick tidbit here since Windows 7 SKUs are a hot topic with plenty of commentary going on right now. Microsoft has a Q&A style press release that’s specific to Windows 7 and netbooks. I recommend reading the entire release, but here’s the most relevant bit:
“These engineering investments allow small notebook PCs to run any version of Windows 7, and allow customers complete flexibility to purchase a system which meets their needs. For OEMs that build lower-cost small notebook PCs, Windows 7 Starter will now be available in developed markets. For the most enhanced, full-functioning Windows experience on small notebook PCs, however, consumers will want to go with Windows 7 Home Premium, which lets you get the most out of your digital media and easily connect with other PCs.”
My take: I think you’ll be able to purchase netbooks most commonly with Windows 7 Home Premium. OEMs may offer upgrade options to Windows 7 Professional or Ultimate and thus charge accordingly. Hopefully, a Windows 7 Home Premium license on a netbook doesn’t add a relatively large cost to the hardware, but there’s no info on that yet. I’m also thinking that the Starter Edition might be offered in lieu of, and the same price as, a Linux operating system from an OEM. Thoughts?