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Microsoft will soon stop selling Windows 10 licences, marking the end of an era

As of January 31, 2019, Microsoft will no longer provide Windows 10 licences for purchase on its website, therefore ending the reign of the current most popular operating system in the world.

Operating system (which contains Home and Pro versions) has been available since late 2014, with full public release occurring in July 2015. After the stuttering failures of Windows Vista, Windows7, and Windows8, Windows 10 came as a welcome relief, with many users praising its return to the simple but powerful interface of Windows XP.

Though Windows 11 was released at the end of 2021, making it over a year old at this point, adoption has been slow. Windows 10 still had more than four times the market share of its replacement as of December of last year.

You have till the end of January to purchase a licence for Windows 10 Home or Pro from Microsoft. We don’t know why the UK version of Windows 10 Pro costs extra, but the basic Home edition of the OS costs $139/£120/AU$225. The Pro edition costs $200/£240/AU$339.

Still not using Windows 11? Don’t be nervous

Thankfully, Microsoft has promised to keep rolling out critical bug fixes and stability updates for Windows 10 for quite some time. There is no urgency to update to the current version of Windows, since Microsoft has already declared that formal support will end on October 14, 2025.

The announcement of Windows 10’s end of sale comes not long after Microsoft officially ended support for Windows 7, 8, and 8.1 on January 10. We’re relieved that Windows 8 is now dead and buried, but there are still many people on pre-10 versions that are vulnerable to security flaws and hacks.

Although Microsoft will no longer provide Windows 10 as a downloadable product, many third-party vendors will likely continue to offer it for some time. There’s also no telling what kind of arrangements Microsoft has made with its original equipment manufacturers, so it’s possible that laptop and desktop PC makers may keep purchasing licences of Windows 10 for use in their devices. The operating system is still widely expected to be included in a wide variety of laptops this year, from entry-level machines to high-end gaming rigs.

It’s also worth noting that, even before Microsoft said it would no longer offer Windows 10 directly, you could purchase the OS cheaply from other sites if you were running an earlier OS and wanted to upgrade to Windows 10. You can get keys Now for less money, but if you’re resourceful, you can find OEM keys on sites like Kinguin for much less. However, keep in mind that you’ll be taking some risk since they aren’t usually the most renowned stores.

That Microsoft has begun the process of releasing Windows 10 to the great motherboard in the sky is not shocking. This initiative is intended to increase the number of people using Windows 11, which hasn’t been adopted as quickly as the tech giant would want. We’ve put up a helpful manual for you to use if you’re considering an upgrade.