In what is undoubtedly a further display of class from a powerful company, Microsoft is giving a free copy of Windows Vista to each and every TAP beta participant who filed at least one bug report.
The free copy is the beta tester's choice of either Vista Ultimate Edition or Vista Business Edition. The Ultimate edition is the top-of-the-line version of Vista and is indeed a superset of Business Edition, and what I think most of the testers would end up taking.
There were a rumored 20,000 TAP, or invited testers on Vista; not to be confused with the umpteen millions in the CPP or public beta.
Robert McLaws, in his informative post here is using a lowball, IMO, percentage of 25% of the TAP testers who filed at least one bug report, 5000, and coming up with a nearly $2 million USD amount. I believe the number of technical beta testers who filed at least one report might be closer to 66% which makes this 'Thank You' a $5.2 million giveaway.
Remember also, that in my case, and for a lot of technical beta participants, the familiarity with Vista we have gained over the last nearly two years, will translate into expertise that we can directly benefit from in the coming upgrade cycle.
The benefits TAP beta participants expect are just that: the ability to stay ahead of the
herd users, and, in the same instant, try out great software.
This is a very good and unexpected vig to the whole Vista Beta program.
I, and by proxy, Logikworx, and SmallBizVista.com, are determined to monetize this advantage as soon as our upgrade/migration infrastructure is in place and not one second later. My upcoming SmallBizVista.com/Logikworx report, Windows Vista and Office 2007: A Coherent Strategy for a Painless Small and Medium Business Migration, due to be released shortly, will detail exactly what we have in stock for Logikworx clients and end-users.
As a TAP beta tester and Microsoft Partner, I sincerely thank Microsoft and the Vista Beta Team.