Let’s follow the money. The OEMs are paid by a variety of software makers to install crapware onto systems. The OEMs don’t disclose how much money they receive from this, but sources tell me that it works out at a few dollars per PC. That doesn’t sound like much, but multiply that across millions of PCs and it becomes a significant number.
Then the customer pays the OEM — or a middleman — for the PC, a PC which Microsoft itself admits is “slower-than-should-be” because of all the stuff loaded onto the system unnecessarily. Consumers are expected to take their new PC to a Microsoft Store — though there are currently only 16 of them in the United States — and pay Microsoft $99 to remove the crapware that the OEMs were paid to install.
It could only be worse if the OEMs wanted payment to remove crapware. Think that wouldn’t happen? It’s already been tried. Back in 2008, Sony announced plans to charge customers $50 for what it called “Fresh Start” systems that were free of crapware. The plans were dropped following a barrage of negative feedback.
The OEMs make money from installing crapware onto PCs, and now Microsoft is making money removing it. Makes you realize why more and more people are buying Apple hardware.
Most of you probably already know that you can remove a lot of the preinstalled crapware from PCs using PC Decrapifier. It won’t give you the nice Signature edition desktop wallpaper, and won’t install pretty much every piece of Windows Live software ever made onto your PC — like Microsoft seems to do on Signature editions PCs — but it will remove most of the crapware that you find on new PCs. And the best part is it won’t cost you $99. In fact, it won’t cost you anything, because it’s free for personal use.