Windows 8 upgrade details shared at Microsoft event

We're live at Microsoft's big Windows 8 event in New York City, with the big talking point being the launch of the brand new OS. Microsoft's Steven Sinofaky is currently on stage, talking about the upgrade from Windows 7 to Windows 8. The new OS goes live at 12:01 AM local time tomorrow morning around the world, and for consumers, the upgrade to the new version starts at $39.99.

That's not a bad price, and copies of Windows 8 will be available as a download, in stores, and online, Sinofaky says. With the three different preview builds of Windows 8, Sinofaky says that the new OS has gone through a whopping 1.24 billion hours of testing, which should mean that Windows 8 is as bug-free as possible when it launches in just over 12 hours. Of course, as we covered in our review of Windows 8, there are a number of reasons to upgrade, including better performance over Windows 7.

Sinofaky touched on that during his presentation too, claiming that Windows 8 offers better battery life, faster boot times, and a "smaller memory footprint." The big bonus is that most Windows 7 programs are compatible with Windows 8, which means that you spend less time looking for updates after your install of the new OS is complete. We'll undoubtedly be hearing more about Windows 8, Surface, and Windows RT during this event, so keep it tuned to SlashGear and be sure to check out our Microsoft Portal for any news you might have missed!