One of the novelties with Vista was supposed to be the Windows Anytime Upgrade which involved providing all consumers with a single DVD containing multiple versions of Vista and allowing them to upgrade their system to a pricier version by purchasing an electronic key online. Apparently the program hasn’t worked too well and Microsoft is discontinuing Windows Anytime Upgrades on Feb. 20:
Microsoft has now decided to stop distributing product keys online, it said on Thursday. Starting Feb. 20, customers who want to upgrade will have to buy a Windows Anytime Upgrade kit from a local retailer, or via postal mail from Microsoft. The kit will include a Vista DVD and a product key for the version they are upgrading to.
Microsoft said it was making the change based on feedback from users. The new system means customers won’t have to worry if they lost their original Vista DVD and now want to upgrade.
However, it also means that people will now have to visit their local retailer or contact Microsoft via post (an option not available in Japan).
I’m sure there’s a problem with consumers having trouble locating their Vista DVDs, but I also wonder how much demand there is for version upgrades in the first place.