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Microsoft Corporation launched Windows 7 on Thursday in an attempt to win back customers from arch rivals Apple and Google after its setback with Windows Vista.

The new system which is faster less cluttered and has new touch- screen features comes almost three years after the launch of Vista which was found to be too complicated by many home users and business customers as well.

The success of Windows which accounts for more than half of Microsoft's profit and powers more than 90 per cent of personal computers globally is crucial for chief executive Steve Ballmer to revive the company's image as the world's most important software firm.

" I have to say I'm chomping at the bit," Ballmer told an audience of Microsoft customers and partners in Toronto on Wednesday, adding that he is ready to make sales calls himself on Windows 7.

Announcing the availability of Windows 7 for its customers in India, Microsoft India chairman Ravi Venkatesan said, “Windows 7 is designed to be more reliable and responsive, delivering a simplified personal computer (PC) experience for consumers." In India, the prices start from Rs 5,899 and the full version is available at a more- than- expected rate of Rs 11,000. He said, " Windows 7 delivers on a simple premise: make it easier for customers to do the things they want on a PC through a streamlined user interface and several new features that make everyday tasks faster." The result is an easy to connect, easy to browse and simple to use operating system, requiring less waiting, less clicks, less hassle connecting to devices, less power consumption and less complexity for the consumers.

With features such as Aero Shake, Peek, Snap, Jump Lists and a redesigned Windows Taskbar.

Windows 7 is designed to become the control center for all the media and make it easy to do more with photos, music, movies and videos.

Innovative new features like Home Group, Play To, Windows Live Movie Maker and Remote Media Streaming in Windows 7 will help consumers discover easy and new ways to get things done.

Also, engineered to meet the demands of businesses of all sizes, Windows 7 promises significant improvement in productivity levels. Its enhanced security and control capability delivers reduced risk and effectively streamlines PC manageability to drive reduced costs.

Venkatesan said businesses in India are benefiting from these features, and more than 1000 enterprises are currently deploying Windows 7.

Windows 7 is available in six editions, targeted at specific user groups and addressing all segments of the market.

The two primary editions are: Windows 7 Home Premium for home consumers and Windows 7 Professional for small and medium- sized businesses.

Venkatesan said Windows 7 is available at more than 45,000 retailers around the world and in India.

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