Windows 10 is Free, But Microsoft is Charging For Add-Ons/Other Features

Windows 10 is absolutely free for those who are upgrading from Windows 7 or Windows 8, but Microsoft played a clever trick there, by removing basic features from the core Windows operating system and offering those ‘removed’ features as add-ons and then charging for it too!

We believe that all of this is happening because of the Microsoft’s new CEO Satya Nadella’s innovative thinking! Since the competitors are providing free operating system upgrades, so Microsoft had no other option but to offer a free upgrade to all the Windows 7 and Windows 8 users.

But masterminds over at Microsoft never give away anything for free, and we all know that! So they decided to remove those features that already existed in the previous version of Windows and offered those as an add-on. And two recently discovered add-ons are Windows DVD Player and the most popular game, Solitaire.

Windows DVD Player

It seems like Microsoft has unintentionally forced the users of Windows 10 to download and stream movies by releasing their own standalone DVD Player app. This app provides the user with the ability to play DVD movies in Windows 10.

It does sound useful, right? No doubt, it is very useful, but this add-on app isn’t free and comes with a price tag of $14.99.

For those of you who don’t know, Microsoft removed Windows Media Centre in their latest release of the Windows operating system, which resulted in the lack of support for DVD disc playback. It is believed that the removal of WMC from Windows 10 is due to some licensing issues as Microsoft is saving money by not disbursing for permissions required to play DVDs.

After noticing the features being offered by Microsoft’s native Windows DVD Player, we get to know that it does not serve as a replacement for the most popular Windows Media Player because it is restricted. The features of Windows DVD Player are:

  • Plays DVDs on your PC
  • Simple controls for disc navigation

Apart from that, as the title of the app states, this app won’t even allow you to play Blu-ray discs and stored DVD backups i.e. VOB files. It only provides you with the capability to run DVD optical discs. Nothing else. Making this app basic, simple and very pricey.

But wait, Windows DVD Player for Windows 10 can also be obtained free, only if you are upgrading to Windows 10 from Windows 7 Home Premium, Windows 7 Professional, Windows 7 Ultimate, Windows 8 with Windows Media Centre, and Windows 8.1 with Windows Media Centre. But for the rest of the users it is going to cost $14.99.

Windows DVD Player is very basic and very expensive – Image credit Microsoft

However, Windows DVD Player’s FAQ page reveals that the free version is available for limited period. Microsoft hasn’t revealed the estimated date, but it is stated that free version is available until the free upgrading offer ends.

“The timing has not been finalized yet. It will end at or before the free Windows 10 upgrade offer.”

So if you want more functionalities or else if you are not qualified for the free Windows DVD Player app then we will recommend you to go for third-party apps and software instead. And our recommendation would be to install VLC Player (i.e. VideoLan Player), which is, in fact, a pretty small and one of the most effective media player available out there.

According to the VLC Player’s website, this player is capable of playing a wide range of formats including video and audio files, and would be your best bet whether you are playing DVDs or some Blu-ray formats.


Now let’s discuss what actually happened to Solitaire, the game that exists on the operating system since after the release of Windows 95, absolutely free. But Windows 10 users begin to complain that Microsoft is now charging for the ad-free version.

For those of you who don’t know, Microsoft made many changes within the game by the release of Windows 8, but we believe many didn’t notice. Back then, Solitaire Collection along with five different versions made it to the Windows 8 Store, and they are available in Windows 10 Store too!

The five version of Solitaire includes Pyramid, TriPeak, Spider Solitaire and Klondike, whereas Windows Solitaire and FreeCell (do you remember that?) were the games that used to come along with Windows.

Solitaire was removed from Windows 10 and users must now pay for the full experience – Image credit Microsoft

However, all these basic games can be played absolutely free and during gameplay your experience won’t be disturbed by any advertisement. Now what the people over at Microsoft are charging you for is the new add-ons within the Solitaire and they are called Star Club and Daily Challenges. These new add-ons are specifically designed for serious Solitaire players who are interested in taking part in the achievements and challenges.

Everyone is free to play these Solitaire add-ons and compete in these challenges, but as a free user, before you even play a game you will have to sit and watch a full-screen video advertisement. But that advertisement and waiting timeframe can be avoided by opting for Solitaire Deluxe version which requires a subscription payment of either $1.49 every month or $9.99 every year.

But what about those who already paid for the Solitaire Deluxe version? Won’t their subscription is carried forward to Windows 10 after a successful upgrade? So here’s what spokesperson over at Microsoft said regarding this issue:

“A customer’s annual subscription to the Microsoft Solitaire Collection Premium edition that they purchased on Windows 8 does extend to Windows 10. We’re aware of a delay that is currently preventing the transfer of that subscription, and are working diligently on getting customers back to their premium features as soon as possible.”

Microsoft has become so serious with this game that they even made a dedicated Facebook page for this game by the name of Microsoft Solitaire Collection.

So, based on our previous reports on how Windows 10 is a privacy risk and how it uses your Internet bandwidth to send updates to other users without your knowledge, it seems upgrading that Windows 10 is not worth it.

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