Windows 8.1, the update for Windows 8 is scheduled to be launched for public on October 18, 2013. The update would be free for all Windows 8 users while the retail DVD costs $119.99 and $199.99 respectively for Windows 8.1 Core and Pro Editions.
Microsoft will also launch the Windows 8.1 update for Windows RT users as well as Enterprises but, there are some differences between the 4 available editions of Windows 8.1. All 4 editions carry some unique features and each have been tailored specifically for different audiences.
If you are one the people who can’t understand the differences between the 4 available editions of Windows 8.1 then, you are at right place. The comparison table below (click to enlarge) shows feature-by-feature comparison of all four Windows 8.1 editions.
It is to be noted that users upgrading from Windows 8 will get the same edition of Windows 8.1 as their Windows 8 editions e.g. if you upgrade from Windows 8.1 Pro with Media Center then, you will be upgraded to Windows 8.1 Pro with Media Center and vice versa.
Which version is best for you?
- Home or regular users:
Windows 8.1 Core Edition is best for all the regular home users since it carries all the features of a Windows which are needed for everyday life. You can play music, videos, install and run desktop apps including Office, use desktop browsers and play games etc.
Note: If you tend to use the Media Center then Windows 8.1 Pro Pack is best for you since, Core Edition don’t include that feature. Windows 8.1 Pro Pack is an edition to Windows 8.1 Pro.
- Professionals and developers
If you are a professional and want to use the advanced features of Windows 8.1 like Hyper-V, VDI and remote desktop client (host) then, Windows 8.1 Pro is best for you. Windows 8.1 Pro also holds the option to upgrade to Windows 8.1 Pro Pack which will install the Media Center upgrade. See the pricing of Windows 8.1 for Pro Pack upgrade details.
- Enterprises and business organizations
If you belong to an enterprise or have your own business and want to run Windows 8.1 on your client or employee’s PC then, Windows 8.1 Enterprise is best for you. Windows 8.1 Enterprise Edition lets you have additional enterprise specific features like Windows to go, control over your employee’s PC like Start Screen customization and app installation as well as ability to install third party Modern-UI apps.
- Windows RT 8.1:
Windows RT 8.1 is the version of Windows 8.1 which comes pre-installed on ARM processor based devices. Windows RT 8.1 can only be installed by the PC manufacturer so, you won’t find the source of it on any DVD. Windows RT 8.1 devices tend to provide better battery life on devices but, you won’t be able to run any desktop (x86) apps on your device.
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