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Windows 8 Professional edition revealed in latest beta builds

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The latest Windows 8 builds include a Professional edition, indicating that Microsoft is starting to plan its SKU offerings for the operating system.

Windows 8 Consumer Preview on ViewSonic tablet
Windows 8 Consumer Preview on ViewSonic tablet

Documents from HP revealed earlier this year that Microsoft may be preparing to scale back its plethora of Windows 8 editions, and leaked information on the company's latest internal builds appears to confirm at least one SKU. Winunleaked posted several screenshots of a post-beta version of Windows 8 today, documenting a "Windows 8 Pro" edition that includes Windows To Go and an option, through Windows Anytime Upgrade, to add extra features with a "new edition of Windows" — indicating that the Professional edition might not be the top SKU in Microsoft's plans.

Microsoft's Windows 8 Consumer Preview included references to a "Professional Plus" Windows 8 edition, along with the traditional Starter, Home Basic, Professional, Enterprise, and Ultimate editions. Microsoft is staying mum on its SKU plans for Windows 8, but a number of Windows watchers have called for the company to simplify its offerings when the operating system goes on sale later this year.