Free version of Windows 10 to launch on July 29

Microsoft today announced that it will release Windows 10 as a free upgrade on July 29 for customers already running Windows 7 and Windows 8.1. Users will need to take advantage of the offer within the first year of Window 10's availability, at which point it will become a paid for upgrade. 

The software giant is yet to confirm Windows 10 pricing for customers ineligible for an upgrade, but an early listing from online electronics retailer Newegg suggests the home version will cost approximately AUD$143 and the professional version cost approximately AUD$196.

At time of writing, Newegg's listing still states a launch of August 31. It is not clear if this is inaccurate, or whether boxed copies will be released at a later date. 

Microsoft is letting customers "reserve" their free Windows 10 update through an icon that will appear in the system tray on Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 devices. Users will then receive a notification when the upgrade is ready, which will let them schedule installation for a certain time.

Key features in Windows 10 include the return of the start menu, a new internet browser (dubbed Edge) that will replace Internet Explorer, the ability to stream Xbox One titles and a desktop version of Cortana, Microsoft's voice-activated assistant.

UPDATE 2/6/15: Newegg has now updated its listings to read July 29, but pricing remains the same

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