I Can’t Think of a Good Reason to Upgrade to Windows 7 — Maybe I’ve Migrated Completely to the Cloud?

So I’ve been wanting to install Windows 7 for the last few days now, and even though I can buy it for $30 as a student, I can’t find a particularly good reason to do so. I want to have the latest shiny operating system, but it still needs to be justified. Microsoft isn’t even helping me out. I went to Microsoft to see if they could sell me on it, and I have to say, they failed.

I checked out the ‘What’s New‘ section to find out if there were any appealing new features. They have a series of 7 second video demos which are admittedly funny, but absolutely fail to show me anything that is worth the price of the upgrade, or even the time it would take. They demo Aero Shake: hides other windows when you shake one, Aero Snap: let’s you more easily organize windows side by side, and they also show that Windows 7 has good sleep speeds. But seriously, these are some pathetic improvements over XP or even Vista. What am I actually paying for? And I’m talking about paying just $30 for a upgrade, if I wasn’t a student, the price would be $200 (for Windows 7 Pro Upgrade) and I wouldn’t even consider that given the features they are showing me.

windows 7

A lot of this is making me realize how I hardly rely on an operating system at all these days. The OS for me is just a medium that get’s me to the internet, and there is a huge selection of free operating systems out there to choose from, so why pay $30 (or $200 for some people!) for a new one? People are starting to call web based productivity/computing ‘cloud computing’ as one uses applications that aren’t stored locally on a computer, and can thus be access anywhere that there is a connection to the web, and I’m feeling like I’ve fully moved to cloud computing. Give me a computer, and an internet connection, and I can get work done. There is barely anything that I use that is Windows specific anyway. The only actual programs that I use anymore are iTunes, Windows Live Writer and perhaps a simple image editor. Aside from these, everything I do is on the web all I need is a fast browser.

The only appealing thing, for me, about Windows 7 is that reports have indicated that it is generally faster than Vista. But why not go with a free alternative like Linux? I could easily download and install a Linux distribution today, for free, and it would probably run just as fast, if not faster than Windows 7. So what am I really paying for with a Windows 7 upgrade? Speed over Microsoft’s previous OS? Why not just go back to XP, which I already own, and is just as fast for the most part?

If you have or are planning on upgrading to Windows 7, how did you justify it? Was there any ‘killer feature’ that you wanted? Let us know in the comments.

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